DeBeers has staked over 1.94 million hectares of land in north eastern Manitoba near the Hudson Bay coast, in return for a payment of $1 million to the Manitoba government - about 50 cents a hectare. The claims surround another 60,900 hectares staked by Western Warrior Resources.
De Beers’ presence in northern Manitoba has sparked a run on exploration licences in the Province, once again creating third party interests – without consultation – on indigenous lands.
Manitoba has a system of claim staking that enables large areas to be claimed at one time.
Mining claims can vary in size from a minimum of 16 hectares to a maximum of 256 hectares. A mining claim in unsurveyed territory is approximately rectangular in shape; the length cannot be greater than four times the width; and no side can be less than 400 metres in length.
To stake a claim, a staker must have a prospecting licence. Anyone 18 years or older can apply for a licence at any Industry, Economic Development and Mines office. The licence is good for a lifetime and costs $10.00.
The prospecting licence allows the licensee to stake any number of claims. Unlicensed people can help stake a claim but the holder of the licence must be present to ensure the proper information is written on the claim posts.