Nanisivik Mine

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Nanisivik Mine
Nanisivik Ore.jpg
Nanisivik zinc-lead ore
Canada Nunavut location map-lambert proj3.svg
Schlaegel und Eisen nach DIN 21800.svg
Nanisivik Mine
Location in Canada
Canada location map 2.svg
Schlaegel und Eisen nach DIN 21800.svg
Nanisivik Mine
Nanisivik Mine (Canada)
Location Nanisivik
Territory Nunavut
Coordinates 73°02′40″N084°32′14″W / 73.04444°N 84.53722°W / 73.04444; -84.53722 Coordinates: 73°02′40″N084°32′14″W / 73.04444°N 84.53722°W / 73.04444; -84.53722
Products Zinc
Company Breakwater Resources
Website Breakwater Resources
Year of acquisition1996 (Breakwater)

Nanisivik Mine was a zinc-lead mine in the company town of Nanisivik, Nunavut, 750 km (470 mi) north of the Arctic Circle on Baffin Island. It was Canada's first mine in the Arctic. [1] The mine first opened on 15 October 1976 and permanently closed in September 2002 due to low metal prices and declining resources. Mine reclamation began in April 2003. [2] It was one of the most northerly mines in the world. [3]


The mine was served by a port and dock located about 2.7 km (1.7 mi) north. It was used for shipping concentrate from the site, and receiving supplies. It is currently used by the Canadian Coast Guard for training [4] and is intended to become Nanisivik Naval Facility.

The mine also had its own airport (Nanisivik Airport) located about 7 km (4.3 mi) southwest and was the main airport for Arctic Bay, until they expanded the Arctic Bay Airport. The airport is about 19 km (12 mi) directly southeast of Arctic Bay but the road between them is 32 km (20 mi). [5]


Nanisivik has a tundra climate (ET) with long, cold winters and very short, chilly summers that are rarely mild. Early winter tends to be snowiest period of the year, with around 40% of all yearly snowfall falling during this short period.

Climate data for Nanisivik (Nanisivik Airport)
Climate ID: 2402730; coordinates 72°59′N84°37′W / 72.983°N 84.617°W / 72.983; -84.617 (Nanisivik Airport) ; elevation: 641.9 m (2,106 ft); 1981–2010 normals
Record high humidex −3.01.2−2.2−1.26.514.518.416.79.01.2−6.3−1.318.4
Record high °C (°F)−2.0
Average high °C (°F)−26.8
Daily mean °C (°F)−29.6
Average low °C (°F)−32.4
Record low °C (°F)−48.5
Record low wind chill −62.9−72.3−67.0−54.8−39.4−24.9−12.8−21.0−30.3−50.0−53.5−60.6−72.3
Average precipitation mm (inches)5.4
Average rainfall mm (inches)0.0
Average snowfall cm (inches)5.4
Average precipitation days (≥ 0.2 mm)
Average rainy days (≥ 0.2 mm)
Average snowy days (≥ 0.2 cm)
Average relative humidity (%)
Source: Environment and Climate Change Canada Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010 [6]

See also

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  1. "Government will continue seeking positive legacy from Nanisivik mine closure, minister says". Archived from the original on 13 March 2007. Retrieved 20 August 2007.
  2. Canadian Mines Handbook 2003–2004. Toronto, Ontario: Business Information Group. 2003. p. 591. ISBN   0-919336-60-4. ISSN   0068-9289.
  3. "Background on Free Trade and the Canadian Mining Industry". Val d'Or Star. 6 July 1988. p. 19. Retrieved 24 February 2016. The Northwest Territories boast two of the world's most northerly mines; Polaris on Little Cornwallis Island and Nanisivik on Baffin Island. Both are Lead and Zinc mines.
  4. "Arcticnet – Naval gazing: Looking for a High Arctic port" . Retrieved 7 August 2007.
  5. Arctic Bay and Nanisivik Archived 27 September 2007 at the Wayback Machine
  6. "Nanisivik A". Canadian Climate Normals 1981–2010. Environment and Climate Change Canada. 2 March 2022. Climate ID: 2402730. Retrieved 22 May 2022.