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Khiagda Plans to Develop Kolichikan Deposit
The Kolichikan uranium deposit development planned by Khiagda, JSC (subsidiary of ARMZ Uranium Holding Co./Mining Division of ROSATOM State Atomic Energy Corporation) has been approved by residents of the Bauntovsky-Evenki District of the Republic of Buryatia.
Public hearings on the substantiation materials for the license of Khiagda, JSC to carry out activities in the use of nuclear energy at the Kolichikan deposit of the Khiagda ore field were held in the Romanovka village, Bauntovsky-Evenki District. In particular, materials on the planned construction and operation of the in-situ leaching site were presented.
The hearings, organized by the administration of the Bauntovsky-Evenki District, brought together deputies and local residents. «The population sees compliance with environmental legislation, the creation of jobs, assistance to the region from the part of ROSATOM State Atomic Energy Corporation, therefore it is interested in the development of the uranium mining enterprise,» said the head of the district Nikolay Kovalev, the chairman at the hearings. Andrey Gladyshev, Director General, Khiagda, JSC, made a keynote speech. He noted that uranium is produced in the most environmentally safe and cost-effective way of in-situ leaching: «This technology has significant advantages over open-pit or mining methods. There is no change in the subsoil geological state since ore mass is not extracted. There is no subsidence and disturbance of the ground surface, dumps of off-balance ores and waste rocks, as well as tailing dumps. The natural radioactivity of the ore body remains deep underground».
Elena Elina, Chief Specialist for Environmental Protection and Radiation Safety of Khiagda, JSC, spoke about the environmental impact monitoring at all deposits of the Khiagda ore field: «Samples of water, soil, atmospheric air, etc. are taken. Gamma survey of the deposit and the sanitary protection zone is in progress. According to the results of long-term monitoring, when examining the Vitim and Butuy rivers, no signs of pollution associated with the enterprise activities were found».
Answering the questions of the audience, the speakers recalled that, since 2016, Khiagda, JSC annually assists in the implementation of the social and economic development projects in the Bauntovsky-Evenki District. During this time, over four dozen social initiatives have been implemented in the territory of presence. Among them are the reconstruction of a well in the Malovsky settlement, the repair of municipal boiler houses and heating networks, the purchase of a water-carrying vehicle for the Maly Amalat settlement, the repair and filling of intra-village roads, the purchase of equipment for kindergartens, the arrangement of playgrounds, and many others. In 2021, Khiagda, JSC will allocate minimum RUB 6 million for social projects.
At the end of the public hearings, all the participants unanimously voted for the construction and operation of the «In-situ leaching site at the Kolichikan deposit» facility, signing the minutes of public discussions.