The lithium-tantalum project in Canada has to comply with 221 legally binding conditions, as listed out in its decision statement

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Critical Elements Lithium proposes to develop an open pit lithium and tantalum mine in northern Québec (Credit: S. Hermann & F. Richter/Pixabay)

Critical Elements Lithium has secured environmental approval from the Canadian government for its Rose Lithium-Tantalum Project in northern Québec.

A joint assessment committee has agreed with Impact Assessment Agency of Canada’s conclusions that the proposed mining project is not expected to lead to significant adverse environmental effects if mitigation measures are implemented.

The committee comprised of representatives of Impact Assessment Agency of Canada, the Cree Nation Government, and the Canadian Minister of Environment and Climate Change – Jonathan Wilkinson.

The Rose project features an open pit lithium and tantalum mine located nearly 38km north of the Nemaska Cree Nation’s village.

It is proposed to be developed on Category III land, on the traditional lands of the Cree Nation of Eastmain. The mine is planned to produce nearly 4,500 tonnes of ore per day for a lifespan of more than 17 years.

Minister Wilkinson issued a decision statement for the mining project, which defines 221 legally binding conditions.

The conditions to be followed by Critical Elements Lithium include measures for protecting fish and fish habitat, migratory birds, and birds at risk, woodland caribou, wetlands, and bats at risk.

The measures also address the possible impact on the use of lands and resources by the Crees for traditional purposes.

Minister Wilkinson said: “Robust environmental assessment processes are designed to protect the environment and ensure that resource development is informed by science and consultations with the public and Indigenous peoples.

“These processes ensure that we can safely move forward with projects that will provide economic benefits to Canadians in an environmentally responsible manner.

“This project has the potential to benefit local communities and support the electrification of transportation by helping to meet the needs of the growing battery market.”

According to Impact Assessment Agency, Critical Elements Lithium will have to complete its steps to get the other required permits and authorisations from federal departments and the Quebec government as well.