Archive | British Columbia Mining

B.C.’s 14 operating mines could shrink to just five in 20 years, report warns – by Nelson Bennett (BIV/Alaska Highway News – October 17, 2020)

B.C. has a serious carbon leakage problem that could see the mining industry here shrink over the next 20 years, and emissions from mining rise in other countries, a new report by the Mining Association of (MABC) warns.

It warns that B.C.’s 14 operating mines could shrink to just five by 2040. When carbon taxes were first introduced in B.C. by the Liberal government, they were generally supported by B.C.’s mining industry.

But the industry expected other competing jurisdictions would likewise implement carbon pricing. Most didn’t. Moreover, the NDP ended carbon tax neutrality, in which increases in carbon taxes are offset with decreases in other taxes. Continue Reading →

BC’s Quesnel Trough: 1,000 km of mineral potential – by Ellsworth Dickson(Resource World – October 2020)

The Quesnel Trough, also known as the Quesnel Terrane, is a Triassic/Jurassic-age arc of volcanosedimentary and intrusive rocks that hosts a number of alkalic copper-gold porphyry deposits with copper gold and silver values and sometimes molybdenum.

The Trough runs northwest some 1,000 km from the U.S. border in south-central British Columbia to close to the Yukon border. In addition to the copper-gold porphyry deposits, the Quesnel Trough, the longest mineral belt in Canada, is also known for several types of gold deposits.

The Teck Resources open pit Highland Valley Mine, which is, in fact, located about 50 km southwest of Kamloops, is expected to produce annual copper production of between 155,000 and 165,000 tonnes per year from 2021 to 2023. Continue Reading →

NEWS RELEASE: AME Responds to BC Economic Recovery Plan (September 17, 2020)

VANCOUVER, British Columbia, Sept. 17, 2020 (GLOBE NEWSWIRE) — AME welcomes the Economic Recovery Plan released today by Premier John Horgan and Finance Minister Carole James. AME recognizes the importance of the short-term measures put in place to stimulate economic recovery in all regions of the province.

In particular, AME applauds the $20 million to be invested in short-term jobs training for in-demand jobs. Mineral exploration and mining will play an important role in the strong economic recovery of British Columbia. With strengthening commodity prices and efforts by the provincial government to expedite permitting, it is expected that the mineral exploration industry will require trained workers in all areas of the province.

The small and medium sized business recovery grant of up to $30,000 for companies and a PST rebate on machinery and equipment are also expected to help service and supply companies for the industry hard hit by the pandemic. A tax credit to support businesses that continue hiring employees is also welcome. Continue Reading →

Opinion: Mine cleanup plan is encouraging, but there’s still work to be done – by Cynthia Wallesz (Juneau Empire – September 7, 2020)


Cynthia Wallesz is an Alaska seafood advocate who fishes commercially for salmon in Southeast Alaska.

Good news for the Taku River and for those, like myself, who sell and eat Southeast Alaska seafood.

Last month, the British Columbia government released a permanent closure and cleanup plan for its long-abandoned and polluting Tulsequah Chief mine. When releasing the plan, B.C. committed almost $1.6 million to start the process.

In tracking this issue for the last five years, I’ve learned that making strides in transboundary waters takes having prominent elected officials on your side. Continue Reading →

KGHM hires new superintendent as bid to revive Ajax mine ramps up (Kamloops This Week – September 2, 2020)

Investors in the former Ajax mine have hired a superintendent as they look to revive the controversial mining project.

Michal Wypych joins KGHM International as the company and partner Abacus Mining & Exploration Corporation intend to resubmit an environmental application to restart the mine.

In a Sept. 1 newsletter to investors, Abacus president and CEO Paul Anderson said that as the Ajax superintendent, Wypych’s duties will initially be focused on First Nations, community and governmental engagement in order to advance the project toward resubmitting the application to government. Continue Reading →

REGULATIONS: MAC slams fed decision to join environmental review of Teck’s Castle project (Canadian Mining Journal – August 20, 2020)

OTTAWA – Canada’s national association for miners, the Mining Association of Canada (MAC), is weighing in on the federal government’s decision to review Teck Resources‘ proposed Castle Mountain metallurgical coal project in B.C., saying the additional review is unnecessary as the project is already undergoing a rigorous provincial environmental review process, and accusing the government of making a political decision.

“We are very disheartened by the federal government’s decision on the Castle project given the expansion fell well below the threshold to being subject to the Impact Assessment Act (IAA),” said Pierre Gratton, president and CEO of MAC.

“This decision certainly has the potential to lead to longer timelines at a time of unprecedented global economic uncertainty.” Continue Reading →

Mining association has buyer’s remorse over Bill C-69 – by Nelson Bennett (Business In Vancouver – August 20, 2020)

The Mining Association of Canada (MAC), which bought into the Trudeau government’s plan to improve the federal environmental review process though Bill C-69, appears to be having some buyer’s remorse.

And it warns that this week’s decision by federal Environment Minister Jonathan Wilkinson to subject the Castle metallurgical coal project in B.C. to a federal review may send a cold shiver up the collective spine of the mining sector in Canada, as well as international investors.

Teck Resources (TSX:TECK.B) wants to extend the life of its Fording River coal mine by stripping nearby Castle Mountain for metallurgical coal, which is used to make steel. Continue Reading →

Heading back to camp: Mineral exploration camps are resuming in British Columbia amidst new health and safety protocols in the COVID-19 pandemic -by Tijana Mitrovic (CIM Magazine – July 23, 2020)

Mineral exploration companies in British Columbia are heading into the field this summer after months of sheltering in place. But in the midst of a global pandemic, what will exploration camps look like?

Governments, industry organizations and companies continue to release and develop new COVID-19 health and safety protocols to protect communities and control the spread of the virus.

In May, the provincial government announced that all workplaces would be required to have a COVID-19 safety plan before resuming or beginning work. Continue Reading →

Bringing coal back – by Robson Fletcher, Drew Anderson and Jordan Omstead (CBC News – July 7, 2020)

In a desperate economic moment, Alberta is abruptly reshaping a decades-old balance in the Rockies and Foothills, chasing opportunity in the volatile market of coal exports, at the risk of the very land that defines the province and its people.

Stand atop Mount Erickson in southeastern British Columbia and it feels like you can see forever.

Look north, and peer along the jagged ridgelines of the High Rock Range, which stretch to the horizon. To the south, snow-capped peaks in the Crowsnest Range cut into the blue sky, rising above dense green forests. Across the valley to the west, row upon row of sawtoothed summits fade into the distance, melding into mesmerizing array.

And then you look down. Down the austere slope, in the valley below, is a massive, open-pit coal mine. Continue Reading →

Why Building of the Alaska Highway is Still an Epic Feat 75 Years Later (TranBC – August 10, 2017)

Driven by wartime urgency, the building of the Alaska Highway remains an epic accomplishment, 75 years later. The highway began as a dream.

In the 1920s, the United States wanted a route through Canada to connect Alaska – its largest and most sparsely populated territory – with the 48 states south of the 49th parallel. Some 800 kilometres of land lay between Alaska and the rest of the US. With no overland way across northern BC and the Yukon to Alaska, the northernmost US state was reliant on air and marine transport.

Back then, Canada was just not interested – there was little to be gained, and the next decade brought the Great Depression.

Wartime Drive Continue Reading →

[B.C. Gold Mining] THE CARIBOO ROARS AGAIN – by Charles Lugrin Shaw (MACLEAN’S Magazine – May 15, 1933)

SEVENTY YEARS ago the gold rush to the Cariboo country, in central British Columbia, was the talk of the mining world and the goal of thousands of men who, eager for adventure and the chance of making a quick fortune, answered the alluring call of the gold trail. The creeks of the Cariboo were worked for generations and yielded more than $60,000,000 in placer gold.

Then came the day when mining men regarded the Cariboo with a shrug of indifference and perhaps a sigh of hopelessness. “The Cariboo is through,” they said. “A mining camp never comes back.”

But they spoke too soon. For this year, thousands of miners— some with their wives and children and even their mothers-in-law—have struck out for the glamorous Cariboo to gamble with the capricious goddess of fate that rules all mining camps, just as their predecessors did in the early 1860s. After half a century of peaceful slumber, the historic old goldfield has awakened and is roaring again. Continue Reading →

[Canadian Gold Mining/Exploration During Depression] The Trails of `34 – by Leslie McFarlane (MACLEAN’S Magazine – September 15, 1934)

THE CARIBOO, the Yukon, the Porcupine—these fields have been the scenes of epic Canadian gold rushes. In each case the stage setting was colorful, the action dynamic. Each field had its peak year of raw drama. They were spectacular rushes, with an element of madness and frenzy. They belong to history.

And yet in sheer enormity, in point of men involved, money expended, wealth produced and in sight, not one of them could hold a candle to the great gold rush of ’34.

Men still speak of the Cariboo Trail and the Klondyke Trail. There can be no such convenient designation for the scene of this year’s great gold trek unless one refers in a general way to the ‘Trails of ’34. Because the scene is all Canada, and the trails lead to new fields and old. The effort is not concentrated upon a single area. The stage is so wide, so crowded with effects that the term “rush” may seem at first glance a misnomer. And yet from Nova Scotia to British Columbia, across the whole breadth of the Dominion, one of the greatest gold treks of all time is in full swing. Continue Reading →

British Columbia: Gold rush garbage mined to unearth history of Chinese miners in B.C. – by Betsy Trumpener (CBC News British Columbia – June 7, 2020)

A B.C. archaeologist is mining a garbage dump beside an old Chinese restaurant, working to unearth clues about the lives of Chinese gold miners more than a century ago. Dawn Ainsley’s dig site is in the Chinatown section of Barkerville Historic Town and Park, about 700 kilometres north of Vancouver.

2,000 Chinese miners

At the height of the gold rush, about 2,000 Chinese miners lived in the area, making up about half of the local population.

Now, working beside historical wooden buildings, Ainsley picks through layers of trash thrown off the side porch of the Doy Ying Low restaurant as far back as 1870. The garbage has been buried in layers of mud from the flooding that’s occurred in the last 150 years. Continue Reading →

Mining offers British Columbians an opportunity to help our economy grow and recover from COVID-19 – by Michael Goehring (Vancouver Sun – June 3, 2020)

Michael Goehring is the president and CEO of the Mining Association of B.C., representing the province’s steelmaking coal, metal and industrial mineral producers, smelting operations and advanced development companies.

The lives of British Columbians have been fundamentally altered by the COVID-19 pandemic. Tragically, it has taken loved ones before their time, while entire sectors of our economy have been shut with nearly 400,000 jobs lost in March and April alone.

In B.C.’s mining sector, the pandemic prompted a quick and resolute response to protect the health and safety of our employees and communities and maintain worksites and operations essential to our economy and the livelihood of more than 33,000 British Columbians.

Despite COVID-19, last month the B.C. Legislature proclaimed May as Mining Month to recognize the industry’s long standing contribution to our province. Continue Reading →

Guest view: Fix Canadian mining issues now – by Rich Moy and Ric Hauer (Montana Standard – June 2020)

Rich Moy spent over 30 years working in water policy, planning and management in Montana and regionally and served as a U.S. commissioner on the International Joint Commission from 2011 to 2019. Ric Hauer is professor emeritus at the University of Montana and Flathead Lake Biological Station. Both have worked on Canadian mining issues since the late 1970s.

An international group of science and policy experts from the United States and Canada recently published a letter in the prestigious journal Science voicing concern for the poisoning of U.S. rivers stemming from Canadian headwaters. The source of the contamination? Hard-rock and coal mining.

We’ve known about the toxins flowing from British Columbia into downstream states for decades. However, the poisoning of U.S. waters from Canadian mining is about to get dramatically worse and will go on for centuries if it is not stopped, and stopped before it’s too late.

The Science article urged immediate action calling on the United States and Canada to jointly invoke the Boundary Waters Treaty of 1909 to resolve several transboundary water disputes. Continue Reading →