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Cameco suspends Cigar Lake operations due to close wildfire

Cigar Lake underground uranium mine, Saskatchewan, Canada. Source:

Canadian uranium miner Cameco has temporarily suspended production at its Cigar Lake mine, in northern Saskatchewan, as a precaution due to the proximity of a wildfire burning in the vicinity of the operation.

Conditions are extremely due to a scorching heatwave moving east after making its way across the province of British Columbia in recent days. As of Friday morning, the B.C. Wildfire Centre said there were nine wildfires of note in the province, with a combined size of more than 60,000 hectares, the CBC reported.

More than 1,000 people living in Lytton, northeast of Vancouver, were forced to leave with little notice on Wednesday.

According to Cameco, approximately 230 workers are being transported off site. Roughly 80 essential personnel will remain on site to maintain the facility in a safe state.

Production at Cigar Lake was suspended for six months last year and in December, due to increasing risks posed by covid-19.

As of September 30, Cigar Lake had produced 2.3 million pounds of uranium concentrates.