Nanaimo school named for Indigenous man who helped find coal could be renamed – by Carla Wilson (Victoria Times Colonist – January 18, 2022)

A committee could soon be set up to rename Coal Tyee Elementary School, named for a First Nations man who helped the Hudson’s Bay Company find coal deposits in the area. The Nanaimo-Ladysmith school board will consider the move after its education committee unanimously backed a motion to set up the committee.

Coal Tyee Elementary school, located in Nanaimo’s north end, was named for ­Ki-et-sa-kun, who was nicknamed Coal Tyee because he brought the coal deposits near Nanaimo to the attention of the Hudson’s Bay Company, paving the way for mining on the central Island. The school, which opened in 1996, has about 350 students.

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Stars aligning for Pretium, as shareholder vote on $3.5-billion acquisition by Australia’s Newcrest nears – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – January 19, 2022)

The $3.5-billion acquisition of Pretium Resources Inc. by Australia’s Newcrest Mining Ltd. appears likely to get the nod from investors later this week, with two proxy advisory firms approving the deal, despite earlier grumblings from the Canadian miner’s biggest shareholder.

In November, Pretium agreed to be acquired by Melbourne-based Newcrest in a cash-and-stock deal. Proponents of the transaction point to the sizable 22.5-per-cent premium that Newcrest has on the table, as well as its prowess in underground mining that may allow Pretium to tame what has been a difficult deposit to mine.

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Two top executives of Canada’s Black Tusk gold mining fined for insider trading – by Tessa Vikander (CTV News Vancouver – January 9, 2022)

VANCOUVER – Two top executives of a Canadian gold mining company have been fined for undisclosed insider trading spanning a three-year period.

In a settlement with the B.C. Securities Commission, Black Tusk Resources CEO Richard Ryan Penn and former CFO and secretary Roman Reuven Rubin, admitted to failing to report the vast majority of their trades relating to the company.

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Mining companies assess damage as British Columbia recovers from floods – by Naimul Karim (Northern Miner – December 7, 2021)

Global mining news

As officials assess the damage caused by heavy rain, flooding and mudslides in Canada’s British Columbia province last month, mining companies have started gauging how severe climatic conditions this year have impacted their production.

B.C.’s Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth on December 6 said the scale of the flood damage in the region was “extraordinary” and that efforts were now being made to remove the debris and rebuild after focusing on emergency response for weeks.

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CBC Misrepresents Indigenous Views, Impact of Activism Against Canadian Oil and Gas (Energy Now Media – December 6, 2021)


An article published this week in CBC’s “What on Earth?” series perpetuates misinformation about the relationship between Indigenous communities and oil and gas projects in Canada, particularly the Coastal GasLink Pipeline.

The CBC also distorts the environmental impact of anti-oil and gas activism by quoting, unquestioned, analysis by activist groups Oil Change International and the Indigenous Environmental Network.

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Newcrest on the defensive after $3.5-billion Pretium acquisition unveiled – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – November 9, 2021)

The latest big deal to shake up Canada’s gold industry has the acquirer on the defensive for paying a premium, but at least one money manager is salivating at the prospect of an even higher offer.

Australia’s Newcrest Mining Ltd. faced questions from analysts, and a declining stock price, after it unveiled plans late Monday to acquire Pretium Resources Inc. for $3.5-billion. Melbourne-based Newcrest is offering $18.50 in cash, or 0.8084 Newcrest shares, for each Pretium share.

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Newcrest Bulks Up With $2.8 Billion Gold Deal to Add Canada’s Pretium – by James Thornhill (Bloomberg News – November 8, 2021)

Newcrest Mining Ltd. agreed to buy Pretium Resources Inc. in a cash and shares deal valuing the Canadian gold producer at about $2.8 billion, adding to a wave of consolidation in the sector.

Melbourne-based Newcrest will offer Pretium holders C$18.50 ($14.87) a share, a 23% premium to the target’s closing price Monday in Toronto. The transaction is unanimously recommended by Pretium’s board and requires the approval of two-thirds of the company’s shareholders.

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Gitxaala Nation in B.C. goes to court over automatic mineral rights – by Brieanna Charlebois (Canadian Press/Global News – October 26, 2021)

A B.C. First Nation is challenging in court an online registry the province uses to automatically grant mineral rights on its territory.

Gitxaala Nation has filed a petition to the B.C. Supreme Court seeking a judicial review, arguing that the process doesn’t require the government to consult with the First Nation and simply grants the claim.

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The life and death of a very special gold rush – by Ellsworth Dickson (Resource World – (September 2021)

In the early days, Canada’s most western province, British Columbia, was built on gold. While there were the famous gold rushes of the Fraser River in 1858 and Barkerville in 1862, there is one gold rush that stands apart from the rest – the Granite Creek gold rush near Princeton, southwest B.C.

What make Granite Creek different is that besides gold, there are also platinum nuggets – one of only two places in the world – the other being the Amur River in Russia.

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NEWS RELEASE: Gitxaała launches legal challenge to BC’s mineral claim regime (October 26, 2021)

Indigenous nation says BC’s “free entry” regime is inconsistent with constitutional requirements and the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples

LACH KLAN / KITKATLA, Gitxaała territory, BC – Yesterday the Gitxaała filed a legal challenge in the British Columbia Supreme Court against the provincial government’s “free entry” mineral claim staking regime. The case, which is the first of its kind in BC, seeks to overturn multiple mineral claims granted by the Province between 2018 and 2020 on Banks Island, in the heart of Gitxaała territory on the north coast of BC, without consent, consultation or even notification to Gitxaała.

“The fact that BC still grants mineral claims with total disregard for Indigenous nations like Gitxaała is a damaging relic of colonialism that has no place in the present day,” said Hereditary Chief Matthew Hill. “We will not allow this to continue in Gitxaała territory and that is why we’ve launched our case.”

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Mining giant eyes transition to copper from coal – by Nelson Bennett (Business In Vancouver – October 6, 2021)

Metallurgical coal prices are at all-time highs, providing companies like Teck Resources (TSX:TECK.B, NYSE:TECK) – the world’s second-largest producer of steelmaking coal – with a potential big windfall.

And with the long-term demand for steel expected to grow significantly over the next few decades – driven largely by global decarbonization efforts – there is perhaps no better time to be in the met-coal business.

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Mining giant Rio Tinto’s control of Nechako River waterflow in B.C. challenged by local First Nations – by David Carrigg (Vancouver Sun – October 3, 2021)

Mining giant Rio Tinto’s control over the Nechako River watershed in Northern B.C. is being challenged by three impacted First Nations and the Regional District of Bulkley Nechako.

According to a Memorandum of Understanding signed between the regional district and the Saik’uz, Stellat’en and Nadleh Whut’en First Nations, the parties want to see a new water flow regime for the river “that benefits all people within the watershed,” plus the establishment of a new river governance regime.

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Norman B. Keevil, Teck’s chairman emeritus, unsentimental about possible sale of miner’s coal business – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – September 20, 2021)

Norman B. Keevil likely won’t be shedding any tears if Teck Resources Ltd. sells its core coal business. Teck’s chairman emeritus, who first joined Canada’s biggest base metals company in the 1960s, says Teck has always evolved with the times, dipping into one commodity, then moving on to another, based on market demand.

“You should read my book. It’s called Never Rest on Your Ores,” Mr. Keevil said in an interview. “Teck started as a gold company, and then it became a copper company.

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7 years later, 2 engineers face discipline for actions that led to Mt. Polley mine disaster – by Yvette Brend (CBC News British Columbia – August 11, 2021)

Seven years after Canada’s largest tailings spill, the two engineers who were involved have been found in breach of their professional codes of conduct.

On Aug. 4, 2014, a four-square-kilometre tailings pond breached at Mount Polley mine in central British Columbia, leaking vast amounts of water and effluent into Polley and Quesnel lakes and Hazeltine Creek.

More than 17 million cubic metres of water and eight million cubic metres of tailings effluent — containing toxic copper and gold mining waste — flowed into lakes and streams that served as a drinking water source and sockeye salmon spawning ground in the province’s Cariboo region. The 40-metre-high tailings dam was built on a sloped glacial lake. That weakened its foundation.

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Clean tech cannot be built on dirty mining that ignores human rights and safety – by Bev Sellars (Vancouver Sun – August 4, 2021)

Bev Sellars is the former chief of the Xat’sull (Soda Creek) First Nation in whose territory the Mount Polley mine is located.

For nearly 200 years, since the colonial mining free-for-all of the mid-1800s, Indigenous peoples across what is now British Columbia have watched as their rights were disrespected, their lands degraded, and their rivers and lakes poisoned by companies whose only interest was making money and then moving on.

Little has changed since then. A new mining boom fuelled by growing global demand for B.C. resources to support clean technology and backed by favourable government policy means the mining industry can continue to treat the province as a money pit with scant regard for the safety of the Indigenous and non-Indigenous people who live here and the environment that means so much to them.

The current B.C. government believes it has done an admirable job of tightening mining laws since it took power, and the industry says it too has improved safety and environmental performance.

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