Agnico Eagle would like to inform the community of Rankin Inlet that an exceedance of the total suspended solids (TSS) was reported to the authorities (Nunavut Water Board, NIRB, CIRNAC, ECCC, KIA, GN) through the spill report system on August 31st.

  • Total Suspended Solids (TSS) in water consists of suspended particles such as dust and soil, as well as organisms such as plankton and algae. At this time, it is believed that the exceedance is largely due to algae developing in the pond used to hold treated water before it is being trucked to Itivia to be discharged.
  • The discharge was stopped immediately upon reception of the non-compliance results from our regular sampling activities.
  • The potential volume of the spill is estimated up to 11,000m3 of water which represent approximately 305 tanker trucks. The exact volume will be confirmed when we will receive the final sampling results.

Investigations are ongoing to ensure that the source of algae is identified and that the appropriate corrective measures are taken to be in full compliance before discharge can resume. Additional sampling actions will occur this week in Melvin Bay. As a reminder the discharge in Melvin Bay of treated saline water from underground activities started on August 10, 2020.

We will keep the concerned authorities and the Rankin Inlet community members informed of the results of our sampling and of the next steps.

For more information, visit our website at or contact us at, or by calling us toll-free at 1-844-323-3002.

For clarification: difference between Total dissolved solids (TDS) and Total suspended solids (TSS)

  • TDS: Total dissolved solids is a measure of all dissolved salts and minerals in the water. These salts and minerals include inorganic and organic forms of major ions (particles), nutrients and metals, each of which are found naturally in the water.
  • TSS: Total suspended solids consists of particles suspended in water but not dissolved of such as dust and soil, as well as organisms such as plankton and algae.