De Beers Snap Lake Mine - 2009 Environmental Monitoring Program

Regions: North Slave Region, South Slave Region

Tags: biology, environmental monitoring, mining impacts, water quality, air quality, hydrology, geochemistry

Principal Investigator: McCallum, Dee (2)
Licence Number: 14444
Organization: De Beers Canada Inc
Licenced Year(s): 2017 2016 2015 2014 2012 2011 2010 2009 2008 2007 2006 2005 2004 2002 2001 2000 1999
Issued: Dec 12, 2008
Project Team: P. Vecsei (Fisheries Biologist, Golder Associates), A. Lahti (Senior Fish and Wildlife Technician, Golder Associates), P.Smith (Fisheries Biologist, Golder Associates), H. Machtans (Senior Fisheries Biologist, Golder Associates), E.Lem (Fisheries Technician, Golder Associates), C. Pullen (Fisheries Biologist, Golder Associates), K. Gerein (Aquatic Ecologist, Golder Associates), J. Virgil (Senior Wildlife Biologist, Golder Associates), D.Panayi (Wildlife Biologist, Golder Associates), B. Topp (Seniro Hydrologist, Golder Associates), L.Young (Wildlife Biologist, Golder Associates), S. House (Fisheries Biologist, Golder Associates), W. Purdy (Senior Geotechnical Engineer, Golder Associates), M.Digel (Senior Water Quality Specialist, Golder Associates), A. Humpheries (Water Quality Specialist, Golder Associates), A. Boulanger (Environmental Technician, De Beers Canada Inc), D. Flemming (Environmental Technician, De Beers Canada Inc), D. Campbell (Permitting Coordinator, De Beers Canada Inc), S. Gagné (Permitting, De Beers Canada Inc), D. Vokey (Environmental Coordinator, De Beers Canada Inc), G. Seto (Environmental Coordinator, De Beers Canada Inc), J. Crowe (Biologist, Golder Associates), K. Mindus (Environmental Technician, Golder Associates), C. Wood (Wildlife Biologist, Golder Associates), L.Carter (Field Coordinator, Golder Associates), D. McCallum (Safety, Health and Environment Manager, De Beers Canada Inc), J. Bartlett (Environment Superintendent, De Beers Canada Inc), N. Doctor (Environmental Technician, De Beers Canada Inc), F. Kotchilea (Environmental Technician, De Beers Canada Inc), 4X students (Assistants to Environmental Technicians, De Beers Canada Inc), D. Bauman (Biologist, Golder Associates), J.R Hall (Biological Technician, Golder Associates), Z. Kovats (Aquatic Ecologist, Golder Associates), P. Bedell (Geotechnical Engineer, Golder Associates), A. Bachteram (Water Quality Specialist, Golder Associates), M. Ealy (Senior Vegetation and Reclamation Ecologist, Golder Associates), C. Madland (Air Quality Scientist, Golder Associates), C. Wilms (Vegetation Ecologist, Golder Associates), K. DeVos (Senior Geochemist, Golder Associates), K. Salzsauler (Geochemist, Golder Associates), J. Bussey (Archaeologist, Golder Associates), J. Galloway (Limnologist/Water Quality Specialist, Golder Associates), A. op der Heijde (Field Technician, Golder Associates), R. McLean (Senior Hydrogeologist, Golder Associates), P. Enzo (Wildlife Technician, Golder Associates)

Objective(s): The objective of the environmental monitoring programs is to fulfill the requirements outlined under the Snap Lake MineÆs Land Use Permit, Water Licence, Environmental Agreement and Fisheries Authorization and to meet De BeersÆ corporate commitments on the environment.

Project Description: This license has been issued for the scientific research application #942.

The objective of the environmental monitoring programs is to fulfill the requirements outlined under the Snap Lake Mine’s Land Use Permit, Water Licence, Environmental Agreement and Fisheries Authorization and to meet De Beers’ corporate commitments on the environment.

The environmental monitoring program will cover an assessment of aquatic, hydrology, geochemistry and North Pile environmental inspection & geotechnical assessments, wildlife vegetation, air quality and archaeology.

The aquatics program involves the monitoring of; water quality, sediment quality, zooplankton, phytoplankton and benthic communities, fish, fish habitat and fish health as outlined under the June 2005 Aquatics Effects Monitoring Program. Additional fish monitoring studies at the water intake and the diffuser will be conducted as part of the fish habitat compensation program.

The hydrology program includes the monitoring of lake levels, streamflow, and outflows through the use of dataloggers; the measurement of site runoff at on-site Surveillance Network Program (SNP) monitoring stations; and the download and processing of hydro-meterological data to calculate lake evaporation for the water balance analysis.

The geochemistry program is part of the annual Acid Rock Drainage (ARD) program as required under the Water Licence and presented in the October 2005 Ore Storage, Waste Rock, and Processed Kimberlite Management Plan. The program requires an annual site inspection to monitor site runoff/seepage and review the placement of materials and identify any signs of acid generation. The North Pile monitoring program is also presented in this Plan and focuses on monitoring the geotechnical stability and temperature of the waste rock piles on-site. North Pile geotechnical investigations include geotechnical drilling.
The vegetation monitoring program consists of assessing the area of impact of Mine activities on vegetation, asses changes in the Ecological Land Classification units of vegetation within the local study area and esker quarry area and also involves monitoring permanent plots in test and control areas to determine species composition and plant health, and the effect of various reclamation methods on re-vegetation and soil properties. This program includes the collection of lichen and vascular plants to measure potential contaminant uptake levels from areas in proximity to dust fall.

The air quality monitoring program involves the collection and processing of meteorological data from the on-site weather station, and the download and measuring of particulate matter and dustfall from sampling stations on site.

Underground water quality and quantity will be monitored as per the Water Licence and corporate commitments which also includes fracture, grouting, and drill-hole management (including monitoring existing drill holes within Snap Lake).

Transportation for these various activities includes but is not limited to truck, foot, helicopter, fixed-wing planes, snowmobiles, and boat.

Results of these studies are summarized in annual reports as required under the Mine’s Water Licence and Environmental Agreement. These documents are circulated to the appropriate government agencies, members of the Snap Lake Working Group, and aboriginal organizations that are party to the Environmental Agreement. These documents are part of the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board public registry.

The fieldwork for this study will be conducted from January 01 to December 31, 2009 at Snap Lake and regional study area (31 km radius of camp).