Use of Traditional Knowledge at Diavik
The use of Traditional Knowledge/Inuit Qaujimajatuqangit in environmental management and monitoring at Diavik is an ongoing point of discussion between EMAB and Diavik. The meaningful involvement of Aboriginal people in environmental monitoring program design, as well as the inclusion of TK/IQ has always been an EMAB priority. EMAB has tried various ways to encourage Diavik to take action on this Environmental Agreement (EA) committment.
Establishing the TK Panel
The Environmental Agreement states that EMAB can create special panels when an issue calls for the knowledge of Aboriginal elders. EMAB has previously gathered ad hoc TK/IQ Panels focused on specific topics. In 2011, EMAB became more actively involved in bringing TK/IQ holders together to address issues such as caribou and closure planning. EMAB held three TK Panel sessions from 2012 to 2013 focused on mine closure. In 2013, Diavik took a greater role in facilitating the TK Panel, with EMAB assessing the results of the work and Diavik's responses. EMAB is pleased to see that Diavik has made efforts to include TK/IQ in closure planning, and continues to make sure Diavik addresses the TK Panel's recommendations in a meaningful way.
The TK Panel now
Diavik now leads the organization of TK Panel meetings. The Panel meets once or twice a year and focuses on a specific topic at the mine. The process involves a combination of presentations, semi-structured discussions, and formal talking circles. This allows for a balance of learning, self-direction and consensus-building among Panel members. Detailed transcripts of each meeting are kept to make sure everything said is accurate and complete. At the end of each session, the Panel drafts recommendations and presents them to Diavik. Diavik takes all recommendations into account, and lets the Panel know why certain recommendations cannot be implemented. The TK Panel recommendations and Diavik's responses are provided to the WLWB as part of Diavik's closure reports. EMAB's public library has the full list of the TK Panel's recommendations and Diavik's responses.
Previous TK Panel Reports
Renewing Our Landscape - Envisioning Mine Closure and Reclamation of the North Country Rock Pile, Diavik Diamond Mine.
A Way of Life: Bridging Science and Aboriginal Knowledge in Caribou Monitoring at Diavik Diamond Mine.