The proposed Grays Bay Road and Port has hit a hurdle as the Kitikmeot Inuit Association will have to resubmit a project proposal to the Nunavut Impact Review Board. (Photo from Nunavut Resources Corp.)

Assessment halts for Grays Bay Road and Port after KIA misses deadline

KIA’s president says he plans to resubmit a proposal in the coming months

By David Lochead

The Kitikmeot Inuit Association will have to resubmit its proposal for the Grays Bay Road and Port project to the Nunavut Impact Review Board after it missed a Jan. 4 deadline.

The review board wanted an updated scope of the project for the assessment to continue.

The project would see the construction of a 227-kilometre gravel road to connect the old Jericho mine in Nunavut to a deepwater port at Grays Bay. In the winter, it would link up with an ice road to Yellowknife.

The KIA says the project would provide the Kitikmeot region with better access to goods as well as open up potential mining opportunities.

In May 2021, the KIA notified the review board that it had taken control of the project from Nunavut Resources Corp.

KIA president Stanley Anablak said his organization intends to submit a new proposal for assessment.

“We’re in the process of doing that and hopefully we’ll have something on file with [the review board] in the next coming months,” Anablak said.

COVID-19 has caused some setbacks, he said.

“Office shutdowns and things like that have really put a strain on moving things like this forward,” he said, adding that he hopes business can return to normal soon.

Given global factors such as rising inflation and the ongoing pandemic, Anablak said he cannot give an estimate of how big of a delay the project faces yet.

But these challenges have not dimmed Anablak’s hope for the Grays Bay project.

“We’re very hopeful the project will be moving forward and completed.”

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(29) Comments:

  1. Posted by Kitikmeot Resident on

    They really push for it to happen, since forever, and they miss deadline for submission. What’s their excuse? Will it ever happen?

    • Posted by Name Withheld on

      Pretty … poor excuse for letting your own people down.

    • Posted by 867 on

      The Jan 4 deadline was a bit of a rediculous date. Cmon that is the first day back after the holdiays.

      • Posted by Not really on

        Read the actual letter that was sent to KIA. It includes a timeline. KIA had three years to do something, which ended May, 2021. Then NIRB gave KIA until September 2021. Then they gave them until January 4, 2022. Then they gave them a last chance until the termination letter was issued in February. KIA had almost an entire extra year.

        • Posted by Straight forward on

          I hope they – the Nunavut Impact review board and INAC , WWF and concerned indigenous organizations ABOLISH this
          Neutralized project promising every kitikmeot individual a secured job on the project. KIA has no regard for the environment accept that they are an organization that make decisions for each individual beneficiaries regarding their outcomes in the real world , their intensity for this road was pushed beyond an individuals own opinion and coercion using financial compensation. Stop this reckless exploitation by this organization.

          • Posted by Rez on

            What has the Kitikmeot Inuit Association President accomplished since being elected?
            Does anyone know what his mandate was? Elections are in December and I hope there’s some new blood. Gone are the days of the old boys club, time for some change for the better. The old keep holding on for that last bit of power they’ve had for as long as they can remember. Meanwhile, all the ‘politicians’ who own companies have sucked every penny they could off the backs of the Kitikmeot Inuit.

            • Posted by Northern Inuit on

              Mr Anablak has a lot to be proud of.

              – Kitnuna Group of Companies has declared bankruptcy, leaving many beneficiaries wondering what happened to their pension plans and rsp contributions. Along with leaving the people two highly contaminated tank farms.

              -Kitikmeot Corporation Brass David Omilgoitok and John Stevenson had no reprocussions whatsoever for throwing a grenade on Kitnuna despite years of promising plans of recovery at KIA AGMs.

              – Grays Bay floundered in promises and red tape but I’m sure they spent so much money on meetings in Yellowknife, Ottawa, Edmonton but don’t worry they all benefitted in Aurora Gold and Diamond status so they can all check in 3 bags or more. Just don’t ask if things are progressing well.

              -KIA Website took years to build as our IT Department could barely set up new laptops and email addresses but who needs a website.

              -staff morale is at an all time high because who needs training plans and performance evaluations when every two weeks they get paid for doing sfa.

              • Posted by Techsavvy on

                KIA website took many yrs and still not working , I want a job with this organization! I can do nothing as well excellently without complaining and get paid every two weeks. Them workers had a great holiday with them cards if you forgot about them already! Wine and dine every meeting and next location maybe Niagara Falls and Lunch meetings followed by guided tours and then later on another meeting in a posh hotel followed by wine and dining ! Should our representatives make such decisions while intoxicated ? Sadly it is what we are now stuck with while in this pandemic !! Without a choice

    • Posted by Hope on

      I hope it never does.

  2. Posted by Northern Inuit on

    So working from home result into one long candy crush marathon and Netflix binge as well?


  3. Posted by Caribou advocates on

    I hope it will never go through as it lies directly on sensitive caribou calving grounds and runs parallel along the migration route of the Bathurst Caribou Herd and is also on the wintering range of the Dolphin Union Caribou Herds All they will do is make foreign mining companies exploit the land then our government will be stuck with all the clean up after all resources been taken out, and the lands that are wrecked with some polluted water ways will be just covered up. Only focus now is on the road from nowhere that won’t even be connected to any community in the kitikmeot, so what good is it if citizens of the kitikmeot region would like to use the highway and can’t even get there from any of the kitikmeot communities? KIA is not doing anything for the beneficiaries now the coronavirus has reached us as well.

    • Posted by Road to ??? on

      I do agree that this road will only serve mining resupply and shipment and it doesn’t have anything to do with the benefits they are putting forward for Nunavut like: “Connecting Nunavut to the rest of Canada and the world” or “Providing Nunavut communities with access to goods and services from the Northwest Territories and beyond via a new overland route” and the one I like best “Imprroving food security and reducing the cost of living in western Nunavut communities” …how can this be possible unless you travel goods on trucks using the winter road, store it at Grays Bay and redistribute it the next summer by sealift at $$$$$ ? Please explain, I don’t see how this road will directly serve the Nunavummiut…well unless you travel to GraysBay by boat carrying your ATV and hit the land from there, that would be an awesome trip then 😉 !

      • Posted by Tupper on

        Take a trailer. Lots of lakes to hunt and fish Sport hunting will be easier! Big caribou them barren grounds ! Let’s build outpost camps along the whole highway and improve life for land stewardship programs ! $$$$$$$$undisclosed amount of uranium and precious metals unlike gold or diamonds!

        • Posted by Built it, they will come… on

          Well, if you look at Nunavik with the James Bay project, the more you develop, the more you are likely to attract southern outfitters…it wouldn’t be great to see many camps being built along the road since construction material will now be easy to transport there if you have the money…I don’t know, mining is good, but we often think short term for something that will impact people long after we will be gone.

    • Posted by not amused on

      I agree as I too am oppose to any road being constructed on land where caribou as well as other wild life roam. Our ancestors gone before us relied on game for food, clothing as well as they share what they catch with others. Hope this does not happen.

  4. Posted by Southerner on

    Oh,,open up for mining. Then when a mine wants to go,,,everything is against it.

  5. Posted by Make your own friggin road on

    I really don’t understand the push for this road and port. Is there something they know that we don’t?
    “The KIA says the project would provide the Kitikmeot region with better access to goods as well as open up potential mining opportunities”. Better access to goods for who? This road doesn’t service any communities. Better access to goods for mining companies?
    Open up potential mining opportunities? Where? Jericho and Lupin are already closed. Ulu is owned a $20M company with almost no cash, they don’t have the money develop even if there is a road there (AEM is a $30B company for reference).
    High Lake? MMG should make their own friggin road to High Lake, it’s 50km from the coast. Nobody’s building a road and port for Sabina’s Goose Lake project, which you can also see on that map, they’re doing it. Tell MMG to build their own friggin port and their own friggin road to High Lake, and if they do things right there, then maybe KIA can help make the friggin road down to Izok and Gondor.

    • Posted by You are right on

      MMG is – A Chinese government owned mining giant that also owns most of Australias minerals
      Why KIA is trying to build a road to nowhere is beyond ones imagination and will only lead to environmental exploitation and us northern people will be stuck with the foreigners mess . I hope It will never happen or I hope that the cost of it goes over world prices so it will be so impossible for such a tiny inuit organization to do such proliferation on what is the true caribou calving grounds and the true wintering ranges of all the island caribou , not only that the endangered Bathurst caribou herd summers directly on the roads route . Our designated inuit organization-The KIA is only secretly a for profit organization since the pandemic began so they withheld seventy percent allocated for its kitikmeot beneficiaries for this project alone. And the people think why 75$ payed out to them for getting inoculated is a way to get the people off the doldrums from not getting any more assistance From this organization . First when virus was news. Everyone get meat packs monthly for 3 months Now after virus in our territory and community? This inuit Organization is no where to be heard of .
      The rest of the Territories inuit organizations are doing good for their people and not modelling after this Organization in the Kitikmeot region. Kitikmeot people wonder why there left out . This organization is focused only on mining and exploration with all the millions of dollars collected from the inuit impact benefit agreements over the years the diamond mines have been active. Just like a Russian regime only for themselves and not along the people that rely on this organization for its prosperity!!

  6. Posted by sigh on

    As far as I can tell, this project is entirely about ‘opening up the territory to mining’. The arguments about improving transportation for Inuit communities seem unfounded. The port isn’t located anywhere near existing communities, and the proposed road will not connect to existing communities.

    What this project will do is help mining companies make more money. They won’t have to build their own infrastructure if KIA and the government do it form them.

    This is about using beneficiary money and tax dollars to line the pockets of mining companies. The industry has clearly convinced KIA that this project is in the best interests of Inuit. As far as I can tell, they’ve been scammed.

  7. Posted by Sam on

    Build a all weather road from Yellowknife to kuglugtuk, truck goods, building supply’s and build a dock to serve the area ,and to promote tourism, beautiful area and just maybe serve the mining industry.

  8. Posted by S on

    Smoke, smoke, smoke, and mirrors.
    Truth be told, the road to anywhere proposal is only intended to line the pockets of those at KIA and their cronies who’d get in on scheming the road or moving a bit of dirt around; a white elephant if ever there was one.

    The “road” is of no value to Nunavimmiut and of marginal, if any, value to mine owners and operators.

  9. Posted by China expressway on

    I don’t understand why KIA is putting so much energy into this China highway and while they are they miss the deadline.
    How about putting more energy into training locals in your region to work in mines? To really get the benefits of these mines you need trained and ready Inuit workers.
    A very few will benefit from this expensive road, while building training facilities in your region to work in trades would benefit many more Inuit for the foreseeable future.

  10. Posted by boris pasternak on

    Messy, no organizational concerns most of the regional Inuit orgs think they are it but in reality, most times they are hinderance to have things move.

  11. Posted by Umingmak on

    KIA is just letting everyone down as always.

    This road is so, so badly needed for the Kitikmeot Region. It will offer so many opportunities to reduce the costs of goods & services from the south while also creating new resource industry opportunities for Nunavut businesses.

    Get this done. There is no excuse for delays!

    • Posted by Flabbergasted on

      Really? After all of your life in the territory without a highway ? How did you make a living ? I thought container ships and barges serve the Arctic so well that us northern people wouldn’t exploit our lands! Yes many jobs to be had building homes instead of relying on contractors and construction workers from the south !
      All of our educated and graduated people are walking around the roads looking for jobs while the southern workforce’s hammer their homes together! Meanwhile…Nunavut government policies make it impossible for resident inuit in Nunavut communities to start small businesses to get the economy going up north.

  12. Posted by I live in the Arctic on

    Please stop wasting money on this. I echo what “Kitikmeot Resident” said you’ve been pushing this for so long then you miss a deadline. This imaginary road is now only used as a platform for elections, “see we really tried but missed a deadline, we’ll try again next time” what a joke.

  13. Posted by Sam on

    The Federal Gov funded the all weather road to Tuk,no major whineing there,build the road to kugluktuk,and a dock to serve the region,too many hassles now,with Hay River,we need aroad here, at least the KIA,here is not giving up,like the KIA,in the kivalliq.

    • Posted by Withheld on

      Who needs that kind of hassle , EAS done awesome resupplying Nunavut community out of Montreal and only —-
      Kugluktuk had one nwt barge load The rest were container ships . Only reason barge came was because they never got their loads up to their destinations in past couple years because the river was too low for the NWT barges.

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