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NWT and Nunavut Mining Weeks go virtual

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This year, with the COVID-19 pandemic, Nunavut Mining Week, timed with national mining week in May, and NWT Mining Week in June, went virtual. To start the week, the Government of the Northwest Territories launched its free geology Walking Tour App featuring rock walks around Yellowknife. 

Who — as in which species of northern wildlife — pooped? If you completed NWT or Nunavut mining week activity booklets, you would know! 

Wildlife identification methods was one of the many fun and interesting exercises included in the booklet, which was produced for recent virtual mining weeks in Nunavut and the Northwest Territories. 

But how does this relate to the northern minerals industry? For environmental and wild life workers in mining and exploration, wildlife scat (poop) is one way to monitor which animals are living and travelling nearby. 

Discovering more about the many careers in mining, learning about prospecting and mining, seeing how minerals are a part of our everyday lives and their important role in renewable energy technologies, and connecting the cultural value of palaeontology with communities, are among the publications’ many topics. Designed for Kindergarten to grade 12 students, those who completed the exercises had the chance to win some great prizes too! 

Along with the territories’ activity booklets, infographics were produced for Nunavut and in the NWT, the territory’s geological survey produced videos highlighting geology. The Northwest Territories Women in Mining Chapter, launched at last year’s Geoscience Forum in Yellowknife, was also highlighted. 

To start the week, the Government of the Northwest Territories launched its free geology Walking Tour App featuring rock walks around Yellowknife. 

This year, with the COVID‐19 pandemic, Nunavut Mining Week, timed with national mining week in May, and NWT Mining Week in June, went virtual. 

All materials were uploaded to the NWT & Nunavut Chamber of Mines public awareness website at www.miningnorthworks.com . Have a look under the site’s Where It Works menu for all the materials. 

“Going virtual was a great way to go,” says Doug Ashbury, Chamber of Mines, public aware ness manager. “The northern mineral resources industry is a fascinating place, filled with so many opportunities,” he adds. “A big part of what we were trying to do with virtual mining week was communicate, especially to young people, just how amazing the mineral resources industry is.” 

Going virtual meant many partners were involved with support from Nunavut and Northwest Territories governments, and resources provided by the Northwest Territories Geological Survey, Yukon Women in Mining, Mining Matters, the Mining Association of Canada, Crown‐Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada, northern minerals industry companies, and the Chamber of Mines offices in Yellowknife and Iqaluit. 

“Unfortunately, this year, the miners’ picnic, and the mine rescue competition, were cancelled due to the pandemic. We missed those events and we certainly hope to see them back next year. The positive is that we saw a great partnership create a very successful virtual mining week,” Ashbury says. 

And it’s worth noting that mining week could never have gone virtual without the minerals mining produces, like the many elements that make laptops work. 

NTGS video links: 

Ranney Hill geology hike 
Yellowknife urban rock walk 
Meet a geologist 
Mine Training Society 

Submitted by the NWT & Nunavut Chamber of Mines.