B.C. approves permits for controversial mine
VANCOUVER – A controversial gold and copper mine in northwestern British Columbia has received a full operating permit from the provincial government.
Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett says the Red Chris Mine, owned by Imperial Metals, will soon be in full production, providing jobs and economic benefits in the region.
Concerns have been raised about possible environment impacts of the mine from local First Nations, environmental groups and Alaskans, who are downstream from the mine site.
Members of the Tahltan First Nation set up a blockade at the mine last summer after the collapse of a tailings pond at the Mount Polley mine, another Imperial Metals-owned mine in interior B.C.
The First Nation later instigated an environmental review of Red Chris Mine, and then signed on to co-manage the mine with Imperial Metals.
Rob Sanderson Jr., co-chair of the United Tribal Transboundary Mining Work Group, says in a news release that the B.C. government is ignoring the rights and concerns of people who live in southeast Alaska, and Alaskans will continue to fight.