URANIUM BACK IN THE SPOTLIGHT IN GREENLAND


Уран снова в центре внимания в Гренландии

A little over a year has passed since October 25, 2013. On this unremarkable autumn day, news agencies reported that the Greenland Parliament had effectively lifted the ban on the development and production of uranium ore on its territory. The final decision on the start of production should be made at the end of this year, when the signing of an agreement on this issue between the autonomy (Greenland) and the Kingdom of Denmark will take place.

But first a little help:

The largest uranium ore Deposit in Greenland is located in the South, in Kwanefjeld (Narssak), it is located at an altitude of 600 m. the Concentration of uranium in the ore is low (0.003%), but its production is profitable. Ore reserves were estimated at 3.5 million tons, it contains at least 16 thousand tons of uranium ore. The location and conditions of occurrence allow open-pit mining, there is a site for the construction of a concentrator. Transportation of its products is also not a problem-the Deposit lies on the shore of a navigable fjord.



Prior to that, the ban (zero tolerance policy) on the extraction of uranium ore was valid for 25 years

However, thanks to the efforts of the Prime Minister of the country, Aleqa Hammond (Aleqa Hammond), representing the social democratic party “Siumut”, it was possible to legislate to lift the ban. Along the way, she invited all interested parties, including from China, to participate in the study of uranium ore deposits. As a result of all the twists and turns, the main stakeholder was a certain mining Australian company GMEL (Greenland Minerals and Energy Limited), which immediately launched a rapid activity in such an attractive direction. Under her leadership, a dialogue was held with various environmental services and local residents who live near the field. The result was natural-Danish environmentalists expressed their sharp disagreement with the plans of GMEL. It was at the beginning of the year.
Nevertheless, Greenland is increasingly feeling the impact of the crisis in the European Union.

Denmark froze the provision of annual subsidies in the amount of 457 million euros, the British mining company suffered a fiasco in the Chinese steel market and also can not continue to invest in the economy of Greenland, because it is essentially bankrupt. As for the Chinese, they are in no hurry to enter the Greenland market of minerals, or rather they are imperceptibly pushed aside. And hopes for the development of unconfirmed oil fields on the East coast of Greenland turned into a complete failure – for the whole year, no oil company in the world is not interested in them.

In parallel, and painfully long, the local population comes to understand a simple fact: one fishing and tourism in the current cold times will not be fed. Even under the threat of global warming.

All this year there has been a debate in Greenland about the possibility of uranium mining. The party of the left “Inuit atakatigiit” (People’s community) strongly opposes the disfigurement of virgin landscapes, but in addition to “gathering” can not offer any other sources of funding to maintain the standard of living of the population. The social democratic party “Siumut” or, as it was dubbed by local media, “Uranium Party”, advocates the beginning of the extraction of such a valuable metal. However, with reservations, they say, everything will be built according to environmental standards. At the moment, the situation is stalemate, both parties received the same number of seats in Parliament. And the decisive vote will be for the five minor parties that have passed into Parliament.

But, in General, experts agree that Denmark will give its permission and put, finally, its signature on the agreement to begin the development of mineral deposits in Greenland (and will receive a long-awaited percentage of future production). And while Denmark and Greenland solve the legal nuances, the population of Greenland is going to protest, the Australian company GMEL has already approved as managing Director John Mayer (John Mair) for the uranium mining project in Kwanefjeld. Why not? After all, 16 thousand tons of such a rare metal will never be superfluous. Here and the canadian company “North American Nickel” podsuetilas, which in addition to Nickel and copper is still engaged in the production of platinum group metals, received this year an updated license for exploration in the South-West of Greenland with a total area of 3601 square kilometers, has already managed to get encouraging data from the exploration.

Crisis by crisis, and the division of world resources by the Anglo-Saxons goes on as usual. Without too much fuss. The benefit of Greenland is a democratic country, which means Uranus is also democratic.



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