Chris Pedersen — a long return home

Pedersen pictured holding a sample of basnaesite. (Photo by Bailey/Moreton/MyTrueNorthNow.com,)
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For Chris Pedersen, a geologist with Cheetah Resources, coming to work at the Nechalacho Rare earth metals mine felt like returning home.

Pedersen was part of the initial crew that made the deposit discovery in the 1980s.

“Now, at the time when we made the discovery, it was a beryylium discovery and rare earths weren’t in vogue at that time because they hadn’t developed technologies per se.”

Chris Pedersen, geologist with Cheetah Resources

Without a market, the mine laid dormant.

That was until Avalon purchased the project in 2005 and began developing and exploring the area. 

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Cheetah Resources bought the top level resources in 2019, with mining operations starting in 2021.

Pedersen has had a career that took him from Greenland to Brazil, but he always wanted to return to the North.

“I’ve looked at other stuff as well, but the rare metals are always really what I tend to come back to So certainly, when Thor Lake came along, I jumped at the opportunity to come up and, and work on this.”

Chris Pedersen, geologist with Cheetah Resources

Now the project is off the ground, Pedersen says he is proud to be back working in the NWT.

“It’s really very satisfying the work all the people that have been involved with this, all the friendships that are made. I mean the best part of doing this work out here is the people that we work with some that we’ve had the pleasure to work with and some some of the some of the guys that are working here are original from from the 1980s…”

Chris Pedersen, geologist with Cheetah Resources
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