The Ministry posits that it is important to utilize good mineral resources in order to provide growth and development to local communities like Kvalsund. The Ministry noted that the mining company as part of the preparation for the start-up of the mine, and in consultation with the Reindeer Herding industry, implements remedial measures that secures the continuation of reindeer herding in the area.
The Zoning Plan for Nussir and Ulveryggen was approved by the Municipality of Kvalsund on May 8, 2012. The Plan lays down the groundwork for the extraction of copper from Nussir and Ulveryggen ore deposits. Extraction activities will take place in an underground mining operation and the mine tailings will be deposited in the Repparfjord. Based on the current resource estimate, the period of operation is estimated to be between 25 and 30 years. However, new drilling results indicate that the resource is substantially larger than previously
The Sami Parliament and the Area Council for the Reindeer Herders in West Finnmark had filed an objection to the Zoning Plan, claiming that the mining operations were in conflict with the reindeer herding activities in the area. Upon submission of the case to the Ministry of Local Government and Modernisation, the County Governor of Finnmark recommended that the objections are not taken into account, and in the final approval from the Ministry the objections have been rejected.
“The Government has as an objective to facilitate growth in the mineral industry. The planned mining operations in Nussir and Ulveryggen is one of the biggest mineral projects in Norway in a long time and will give positive ripple effects to the municipality and the region”, states the Minister for Local Government and Modernisation, Jan Tore Sanner.
It is estimated that the mining operations will create around 150 permanent jobs, and will generate an expected annual revenue of NOK 600-700 million after the start-up phase. Kvalsund Municipality currently has a population of about 1000, and opportunities for other industries are limited.
The Norwegian Environment Agency will handle the application on the Discharge Permit under the Pollution Law. The Agency will consider the pollution impacts of the planned sea deposition in the Repparfjord.”
Nussir ASA has for a long time been working for a positive industrial development in Kvalsund. The Company has kept a continuous and open dialogue with all the affected parties in the local community. The current decision to approve the zoning plan is a significant step towards a long-term expansion of the business sector in the region. The company will continue its focus on maintaining an open dialogue with the Reindeer Herding and Fishing sectors, and will take their interests into consideration in further development.