The Manitoba government is welcoming a significant investment from Canadian Premium Sand Inc. (CPS) to establish a silica sand operation near Seymourville and Hollow Water First Nation, Growth, Enterprise and Trade Minister Blaine Pedersen announced today.
“We welcome Canadian Premium Sand and its investment to our province to create jobs and economic growth in the community,” said Pedersen. “It is an example of how First Nations, industry and government can be active partners in all phases of mineral development to create and share in the benefits of growth in the sector. As part of our Economic Growth Action Plan, we’re working collaboratively to grow local companies and industries, create jobs, attract talent and investment, and increase the economic competitiveness of our province.”
The Wanipigow Silica Sand Extraction Project, with an estimated investment of over $150 million, is expected to generate 150 local jobs and run for over 50 years, the minister said. Not only does the project harness Manitoba’s high-quality silica sand, it does so in an environmentally responsible way while providing jobs and economic opportunities for local communities, including Hollow Water First Nation, Manigotagan and Seymourville, he said.
“Our local community commitment represents many partnerships and resource sharing for generations to come, and with more than 50 years expected for the life of the operation, designing for sustainability has been paramount,” said Lowell Jackson, executive chairman and director, CPS. “The Wanipigow Sand Project is the development of a world class, completely enclosed, silica sand processing plant which will be capable of operating year-round. CPS will implement rolling restoration, will recycle all of the process water, and will utilize best practices to assure minimal impact to the environment and the local communities.”
Following an extensive review and consultation process, the province has issued an environmental license for this project. Manitoba’s environmental licencing and approval process has been carried out in accordance with The Environment Act, subject to 96 terms and conditions. The province will monitor the project to ensure compliance.
“We respect the concerns of our community and have worked diligently with CPS to develop detailed plans that address health concerns and restore the land immediately after quarrying,” said Chief Larry Barker, Hollow Water First Nation. “More than nine months ago our elders began meeting frequently with the company to address their concerns as well. As a result, the processing facility will be completely enclosed to eliminate dust and restoration plans will be monitored by a community-based oversight committee.”
Pedersen noted the demand for silica and silica sand has increased in recent years, for various uses including solar panels, glass, and in the oil and gas industry. Manitoba has excellent quality silica sand that is easy to access and supply to markets, he said.
The licence and conditions can be found at: www.gov.mb.ca/sd/eal/registries/5991wanipigow/index.html.