Baffinland Witness

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02 mayo 2012


Baffinland Witness is a collection of my impressions and experiences surrounding Canada’s largest-ever resource development proposal—Baffinland Iron Mines’ Mary River project—in the context of mining in general in Nunavut and Canada, both present and historic. While the project moves through the final stages of its review process before the Nunavut Impact Review Board, I will be talking to Inuit and non-Inuit throughout the region and posting their insights here. I hope my updates will outline, in a few vivid details, what it’s like to live in a region so important to Canada’s future, but which so few Canadians ever see.

I am grateful to IsumaTV’s Digital Indigenous Democracy project for the funding to produce this blog. Though IsumaTV graciously provided travel and accommodations support, this blog itself is voluntary. DID created the opportunity for me to observe the review process and connect what I see with the experiences of other indigenous communities, but I am not paid for my observations. I have no editor or publisher and my opinions are entirely my own. I hope you find them helpful.

Ashleigh Gaul

You can find more of my writing at

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Baffinland, DID

Media on this Channel

Socioeconomic impacts, uncertain benefits in Mary River’s second day of hearings

Hearing discussions on the Mary River project’s second day shifted focus from wildlife and environmental impacts to the project’s potential ramifications on individuals and communities; after a three-hour examination of the miner’s accident and emergency response plans, Baffinland introduced the panel that would determine whether all of the previously reviewed negative impacts… Leer más

julio 18, 2012

Mary River's final hearings: Iqaluit, day 1

After over ten hours of presentations and discussions, the first day of Mary River’s final hearings closed at 9:30pm, two items behind schedule, with the intimation of many yet unanswered questions to come.

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julio 18, 2012

What's in Mary River's IIBA? A plain language summary

Last Tuesday, QIA negotiator Paul Quassa spoke over Igloolik community radio to summarize the 24-article Inuit Impact and Benefit Agreement (IIBA) offer the association made to Baffinland earlier this month. QIA expects to receive an answer from the mining company within the next month.… Leer más

julio 4, 2012

"I thought I would grow old there. I even have my gravesite up there."

For 11 years, Michelline and Samuelie Ammaq lived at a series of outpost camps along the south coast of Baffin Island with their four adopted children. Their three cabins and summer camps were clustered around the mouth of Steensby Inlet. Michelline tells what it was like to live there, and her thoughts about the future of the area, below:

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junio 26, 2012

Who Is Baffinland?

A timeline of the Mary River project—and Baffinland Iron Mines’ part in it—from 1962 to present:



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junio 21, 2012