The Board consists of up to nine members, appointed by the Government of Canada and Government of Nunavut from nominations made by the federal and territorial government as well as the designated Inuit organization, Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated:
- A Chairperson is appointed by the Government of Canada in consultation with the Government of Nunavut, on nomination by the Nunavut Impact Review Board
- 4 Board Members are appointed by the Government of Canada, on nomination by Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated. Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated collects nominations for 3 of these positions from the regional Inuit associations
- 2 Board Members appointed directly by the Government of Nunavut
- 2 Board Members appointed directly by the Government of Canada
- 2 alternate Board Members are also appointed by the Government of Canada on nomination by Makivik Corporation, the designated Inuit organization for Nunavik (Northern Quebec). These 2 Board Members can replace 2 of the Board Members appointed through nominations from Nunavut Tunngavik Incorporated for assessments in ‘areas of joint use’ as set out in the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement
Each appointed member’s term is for a period of three years and a member may be reappointed.
All decisions of the NIRB are decided by a majority of votes cast and are required to have a quorum of members (generally 5 members). All members of the NIRB have a vote, except the Chairperson, who only votes to break a tie. These nine individuals form a unique and independent decision-making body. Although they rely upon their Government and Inuit Organization partners for advice and for technical assistance, the members of the NIRB make their decisions on behalf of Nunavumiut (public of Nunavut) and the rest of Canada, and not as agents of their appointing bodies.