The PDAC Environmental and Social Responsibility Award recognizes an individual or organization demonstrating outstanding initiative, leadership and accomplishment in protecting and preserving the natural environment or in developing good community relations during an exploration program or operation of a mine.
Avalon Rare Metals Inc. is being recognized for its responsible exploration practices with respect to community engagement and its encouragement of skills training and employment for aboriginal people.
Before applying for a land-use permit from the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board or setting foot on its new Thor Lake property in the Northwest Territories, Avalon President and CEO Don Bubar introduced himself with letters written to four Dene leader in communities around Thor Lake.
After several attempts at convening a meeting, Bubar was able to sit down with Dene leaders at a neutral location.
They were surprised that Avalon had not applied for a land-use permit before requesting a meeting. Other companies either had received or applied for land-use permits and then sought permission to enter Dene land.