Before the dust had even settled on Mount Polley, mine owner Imperial Metals was active again in Clayoquot Sound. This finding was announced in Who’s Knocking?, a report on mineral tenures in the Clayoquot Sound UNESCO Biosphere Reserve. The report, released by Clayoquot Action in partnership with Fair Mining Collaborative, details who is looking for minerals in Clayoquot Sound, and what types of minerals they are looking for.
Prime Minister Harper’s decision to indefinitely postpone the North American Leaders’ Summit – better known as the annual “Three Amigos” meeting – likely has a lot to do with his own electoral calculus. But it also does Mexican President Peña Nieto a huge favour.
The failure of the Mt Polley tailings facility vindicated Karl Terzaghi and Ralph B. Peck, the two great engineers who founded the science and art of geotechnical engineering. They always warned that the undetected geological feature, stratum, or layer was the cause of failure. This is exactly what happened at the part of the embankment that failed at the Mt Polley mine—the original site investigation failed to identify or characterize a layer of glaciofluvial clay. Subsequent work failed to establish correctly the strength of the layer. And that layer failed when the load from the embankment exceeded the strength of the clay.
An obscure tribunal housed at the World Bank in Washington, DC will decide the fate of millions of people.
At issue is whether a government should be punished for refusing to let a foreign mine operate because it wants to protect its main source of water.
The case pits El Salvador’s government against a Canadian gold-mining company, that recently became part of a larger Australian-based corporation. When OceanaGold bought Pacific Rim last year, it identified the Salvadoran mining prospects as a key asset, although gold prices have sunk by more than a third from their 2011 high of more than $1,900 an ounce.
The case’s implications are chilling. If the company wins, this small country will have to either let the company mine or pay hundreds of millions of dollars.
This summer, we returned to northern El Salvador. That’s where the Pacific Rim mining company started to dig its exploration wells about a decade ago.
Near that disputed mining site, local resident Vidalina Morales explained how she and others came to oppose mining: “At first, we thought mining was going to help us out of poverty through jobs.”
On August 4th the tailings impoundment at the Mount Polley mine failed, releasing 25 million cubic metres of mine waste and construction material into the watersheds below. Some of the waste backed up into Polley Lake, most of it was dumped into the 10km Hazeltine Creek watershed and some spread downstream into Quesnel Lake.
Kamloops, The Kamloops Area Preservation Association, February 5, 2014 - The undersigned demand the resignation of the BC Minister of Mines, Bill Bennett who recently went to Ottawa in an attempt to persuade the Federal Minister of the Environment, the Honourable Leona Aglukkaq, to ignore the recommendations of the Review Panel to decline the application for Taseko’s Prosperity Mine near Williams Lake, BC.
In rural towns throughout Mexico, life carries on as it has for generations. Sons help their fathers haul wood, women tend to the fire and select seeds, and whole families take part in sowing, caring for and harvesting crops.
It’s August 17, 2013. I’m in the cooking tent at the Tahltan Beauty Camp on the flanks of Mount Klappan. The women are preparing a moose. They have wrapped a giant femur – just the bone – in foil and are putting it over a slow fire.
Across the Philippines, people held rallies, made YouTube videos, and organized petitions demanding justice for Dr. Gerry Ortega and the fulfillment of his dream – Never Mine Palawan. Now they are looking for international support to preserve this beautiful island’s environment.
by Joe Foy
Staring through the blur of tree trunks that lined the road as we bumped along in our van, I could see a massive sevenstorey high chunk of limestone rising from a rice field.
I was on the island of Palawan in the Philippines, on a trip this past January to reconnect with family and to learn a little more about the nation where my wife was born.
Up ahead, we turned off the road onto a side track that a wooden sign identified as the way to Ugong Rock.
Clearwater, BC residents seem prepared to trade off an increased cancer rate for a few more jobs provided by the Harper Pit Mine. Unlike the demonstrations that were held in the 1960's, opposition proves small in their current times of economic slump.
by Thaddeus Latarte
Five years ago, it would have been difficult to imagine an open pit mine being welcomed by the people of Clearwater, BC. In 2006, the residents of Clearwater
Clayoquot Sound – traditional territory of the Nuu Chah Nulth first nations – is world-renowned for its intact valleys of ancient rainforest, home to monumental cedars, wild salmon, wolves, bears, and whales.
It is also the site of many firsts in Canadian history,
The second week of June in Kamloops BC, the residents were shocked to hear about a new open-pit copper mine proposed just outside of town. The local paper advertised an open house being held at a local hotel by Abacus Mining Corp. and the provincial and federal environmental assessment offices. People did a little research, and 467 people from all walks of life came to hear about this proposed project.
The ranchers had been contacted earlier and came with many concerns. They made the rest of us aware that at least five ranches would no longer be viable if this mine went ahead.
After decades of monitoring by the Campbell River Environmental Council, the Quinsam watershed at the edge of Strathcona Park on Vancouver Island has finally received some of the scientific scrutiny it deserves, and, apparently, requires. An assessment of arsenic levels in lake sediment around the Quinsam coal mine has been initiated by the Canadian Water Network.
Fifty kilometres south of Fernie British Columbia, in the Flathead River Valley, is a mountain ridge that has no name. A fall photograph shows a sprinkling of snow on wavy peaks, slopes covered in Alpine Fir and yellow Larch, and a lush valley bottom below.
In 2002 the federal government, in virtual lockstep with the Bush regime, created a special exemption to federal environmental rules that would turn many of Canada’s lakes into toxic waste dumps for mines. At least sixteen lakes across the country are slated to become repositories for waste rock laced with heavy metals like arsenic
Forty per cent of the world's electricity comes from coal, and 40 per cent of the world's CO2 pumped into the atmosphere is from the burning of coal for electricity. It was a resource on the verge of being considered passe a decade ago, as many countries were phasing
Ten years ago Beanstalk Capital Corp. was a new company with nothing more than a listing on the TSE Ventures Exchange. Today it is Compliance Energy Corp., and its Raven Underground Coal Project is a proposal to mine 44 million tonnes (2.2 million a year) from a coal deposit near Fanny Bay on Vancouver Island.
In January 2005 the neighbours first learned that a company called Blue Pearl had optioned the rights to begin mining Hudson Bay Mountain, right next to Smithers, BC. The seven million tonne deposit of molybdenum ore had been explored in the 1970s but