De Beers Canada plans to flood Snap Lake, an underground diamond mine in northern Canada, according to media reports. The construction of Snap Lake started in 2005 and the mine was commissioned in 2008. By the end of 2014, De Beers spent more than $ 2 billion for its construction and operation.
However, De Beers had to shut down this project due to contraction in diamond business conditions, as its operation turned to be loss-making. In addition, excessive inflow of ground water has been a permanent problem at the mine, making it necessary to use pumps to drain it.
Apparently, this prompted De Beers Canada to develop a care and maintenance plan for the mine including options for its partial or complete flooding in order to avoid drainage costs.
According to Tom Ormsby, head of corporate affairs at De Beers Canada, in most cases flooding does not affect mines and is quite a common practice used to preserve underground workings.