Most Canadian mines start as open-pit and then by necessity move to underground operations. Each mine is assigned an approximate projected lifespan and while any mine will disrupt the environment to some extent, the Canadian government are working with stakeholders in the major mines to minimise negative impact. The mines are obligated to assess possible negative effects on the area and surrounds before they begin digging and to develop plans for habitat rehabilitation once the mine closes. They are also required to submit a report on the mine’s predicted social and economic impact.
Gahcho Kué, the Canadian mine that mining magnate De Beers are currently planning, is projected to create over 1,000 jobs and enrich Canada’s economy by billions. They are committed to channelling the mine’s success back into benefiting the local community. Both the Diavik and Ekati mines value best practices and equality. They not only condemn unethical practices like child labour but choose to employ indigenous people wherever possible (currently almost half of the Canadian mine workers are indigenous) to benefit the local community, but also commit to equipping them via a skilled training program that awards them a recognised certificate.
While Canadian diamonds are associated with being conflict free and 100 per cent ethical, it is very difficult to accurately track the lifetime of a single diamond. The socially conscious consumer should consider whether the diamonds are also being cut and polished in Canada, or in another country with less stringent laws protecting against practices like child labour.
Diamond Exchange offers Canadian diamonds mined in Ekati and Diavik in the Northwest Territories that ensures total transparency from the mine to the retail store. For a diamond that is completely conflict-free and conscience-clear, choose a Canadian diamond from Diamond Exchange.