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Environment and Climate Change Minister Jonathan Wilkinson has approved the Rose lithium/tantalum mining project, in Quebec, but subject to 211 legally binding conditions with which the proponent – Critical Elements – must comply.

These conditions include measures to protect fish and fish habitat, migratory birds and birds at risk, wetlands, woodland caribou, bats at risk and the current use of land and resources for traditional purposes by the Cree Nation.

The Rose project is located 38 km north of the Nemaska Cree Nation’s village and would produce about 4 500 t/d of ore over a 17-year mine life.

“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,” said Wilkinson in a statement.

This environmental assessment is the first under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act 2012 to be jointly conducted by the federal government and the Cree Nation government in accordance with a 2019 agreement concerning the assessments of the Rose project and the James Bay lithium mine project.