Rio Tinto Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Diavik Diamond Mine

Rio Tinto Celebrates 20th Anniversary Of Diavik Diamond Mine
Photo courtesy Rio Tinto / © James Hodgins

Mining major Rio Tinto is marking the 20th anniversary of its Diavik diamond mine in Canada’s Northwest Territories. The mine, which was discovered during a mineral prospecting rush in the 1990s, has since produced over 140 million carats of rough diamonds through a combination of surface and underground mining. The majority of the diamonds mined are high-quality white gems, with less than 1% being yellow diamonds.

The Diavik diamond deposit lies beneath a frozen lake, requiring advanced technology and considerable effort to recover the precious stones from beneath the permafrost. Despite this challenge, the mine has managed to produce some of the world’s most renowned diamonds, known for their Canadian provenance, exceptional quality, and brilliant internal fire.

Sinead Kaufman, Chief Executive Minerals, Rio Tinto, expressed her pride in the team that has made Diavik a success. “Driven by its pioneering spirit, Diavik is a bold and innovative company with an inspiring story that continues to set new benchmarks for technology, partnerships, and sustainability,” Kaufman said.

Diavik has also made significant strides in renewable energy, with an award-winning wind farm that powers half the site on strong wind days. The company operates the world’s largest wind-diesel hybrid power facility and is a leader in delivering cold climate renewable energy.

The company’s commitment to local partnerships and sustainability has also led to considerable employment, training, and capacity-building opportunities. Almost a quarter of Diavik’s workforce is Indigenous, and some 40% is Northern. The company has spent $7 billion with Northern businesses since 2000, with $3.6 billion going to Northern Indigenous businesses and their joint ventures.

Angela Bigg, President of the Diavik diamond mine, praised the company’s partnership with local communities and the five indigenous groups with Diavik Participation Agreements. “Being allowed to mine is a privilege, and we honour that by working respectfully and through a sense of shared endeavour with our local partners. These are relationships we recognise and value strongly,” Bigg said.

The Barren Lands, where the Diavik diamond deposit is located, is 220 km from the Arctic Circle and has an extremely cold climate, making the mine’s achievements all the more impressive.

The Diavik mine has been a remarkable success story over the past two decades, producing some of the world’s most exceptional diamonds while also demonstrating a strong commitment to local partnerships, sustainability, and renewable energy.

Disclaimer: This information has been collected through secondary research and TJM Media Pvt Ltd. is not responsible for any errors in the same.