Dec 6 An environmental group said on Tuesday it
had filed a lawsuit against De Beers Canada, accusing the
diamond producer of failing to report toxic levels of mercury
and methylmercury at its Victor Diamond mine in northern
The Wildlands League alleged that De Beers failed to report
mercury levels from five out of nine surface water monitoring
stations for the creeks next to its open pit mine between 2009
This was an offence under the Ontario Water Resources Act,
the group said in a statement. It said it had alerted the
province of Ontario and De Beers to the failures more than 18
The remote fly-in/fly-out Victor mine in the James Bay
Lowlands of Ontario is about 90 km (56 miles) west of the
Attawapiskat First Nation.
"After months and months of silence from Ontario, we felt we
had no choice but to file charges," said Trevor Hesselink,
Wildlands League's director of policy and research.
De Beers Canada and a spokesman for Ontario's environment
ministry did not immediately respond to a request for comment.
Methylmercury is created when mercury, a metal that poses
health risks, gets dissolved in freshwater and seawater.
The Victor mine is set to close in 2018 unless De Beers
Canada, a unit of global diamond producer De Beers, proceeds
with an expansion.
De Beers is 85 percent owned by miner Anglo American Plc
(Reporting by Nicole Mordant in Vancouver; Editing by Richard