The territorial government celebrated another inaugural moment in devolution last week with the approval of two water licence amendments.
Environment and Natural Resources Minister Michael Miltenberger signed off on amendments to two Type A water licences on Thursday, marking the first time the territorial government has exercised its newfound authorities over lands, water and resources, inherited from the federal government on Apr. 1.
Miltenberger remarked on the “thorough and timely manner” in which the amendments – received on Apr. 4 and 10 – proceeded through the NWT regulatory regime.
“This demonstrates the success of Northern control over Northern resources and our capacity for undertaking these responsibilities,” he said in a statement last week.
The first amendment was granted to the North American Tungsten Corp., whose mining and milling operations at the CanTung Mine site near the Yukon border in the Mackenzie Mountains required permits to establish a permanent wastewater treatment facility and discharge treated water to the Flat River.
The second went to Miramar Northern Mining Ltd. for its defunct Con Mine in Yellowknife, which allows for changes to cover designs being constructed during the ongoing closure and reclamation of the site.
Previously, such amendments would have to have been approved by the federal minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada. New legislation, mirroring federal laws, gives the government of the Northwest Territories regulatory powers.
Letters approving the amendments have since been directed to the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board.