OHS Canada Magazine

Donkin Mine idled, workers laid off following ‘protracted’ stop work order in Nova Scotia: Company

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November 13, 2023
By OHS Canada

Health & Safety Donkin Mine Mining nova scotia stop work order

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The Donkin Mine has been idled and the remaining hourly workforce has been laid off following a provincial stop work order (SWO) that has stretched for nearly 120 days, the company said.

The SWO was put in place by the Nova Scotia Department of Labour, Skills and Immigration, a provincial regulator for the mine. The SWO was issued in response to a roof fall incident on July 15 that was subsequently ameliorated by Kameron between July 19 and July 27, the company said.

Morien Resources Group announced the idling of the mine this morning, which is owned and operated by Kameron Collieries – which Morien has a 2% to 4% royalty interest in. The company said there is “no timeline to resume operations.”

“While SWO’s are meant to be temporary in duration, and while roof falls are not uncommon in underground mines, and while no Kameron workers were injured nor any equipment damaged during the fall, the SWO nonetheless remains in place at the time of this news release, approximately four months after the fall was reported, which Morien understands makes it one of the longest SWO’s in Nova Scotia’s recent history,” the company said.

It pointed to a report, from Gardner Pinfold Consultants, that recently completed a socio-economic impacts analysis of the Donkin Mine. It stated: “There are very few single prospects in Nova Scotia with the potential to provide economic impacts of this scale and extended period.”


It noted that Kameron has spent $300 million developing the mine since 2015 and, prior to the stop work order, it employed 130 full-time staff. It expected, once it reached full production, to employ 250 — and also pointed to the spin-off jobs in the local community.

“Morien is disappointed that the circumstances surrounding the regulation of the Donkin Mine have compelled Kameron to idle the operation,” it said. “While Kameron has given no indication of its timing to reopen the Mine, Morien will be working diligently to advocate for a potential return to production, and will provide updates to shareholders, stakeholders, and investors as to the status of operations at the Mine as they become available.”

At full production, Kameron would have been the sixth largest employer in Cape Breton, it said, noting the jobs paid about $80,000 annually before bonuses and overtime.


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