Cigar Lake mine to restart uranium production this week: Cameco

2021-09-18by admin

  Canada’s Cameco said in a July 4 statement that it plans to restart production at its 18 million lb/year Cigar Lake uranium mine “later this week,” now that the wildfire risk to the northern Saskatchewan site has lessened.

  ”[W]e’re not advising a specific day at this point” for the restart, said Cameco spokesman Jeff Hryhoriw July 6.The company said July 4 that personnel can be safely remobilized and regular operations resumed, as all infrastructure at Cigar Lake “remained intact.”

  The weather and smoke conditions had improved and the likelihood of further road closures in the area was “minimal,” Cameco said.

  The roughly 230 non-essential employees and contractors that had been evacuated July 1 when the mine was shut temporarily as a precaution due to the wildfire were being transported back to the mine, Cameco said.

  ”Final inspections and preparation of equipment will occur over the days ahead to ready the operation for a return to production,” the company said.

  The mine is located in the northern part of the province, in an area so remote that workers are flown in and out of the site by plane.

  This is the third time in about 16 months that Cigar Lake has been temporarily shut. The first was in March 2020, because of rising coronavirus cases. The mine restarted in September.

  The second was in December, again due to the pandemic. Cigar Lake output was idled until its restart in April.

  Cameco (50.025%), Orano Canada (37.1%), Idemitsu Canada Resources (7.875%), and Tepco Resources (5.0%) own the mine. Cameco operates it.