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Big project watchdog too lax, audit says

BY JUDITH LAVOIE, Times Colonist, July 7, 2011

John DoyleEnvironmental Assessment Office failing to watch for harm: report

B.C.'s Environmental Assessment Office is failing to adequately monitor major projects such as mines, power plants and tourist resorts, says B.C. auditor general John Doyle.

In a highly critical report, released Thursday, Doyle said the EAO, which is supposed to provide oversight of major projects, cannot assure the public that it is guarding against harmful environmental impacts from projects that have been approved.

Auditor slams watchdog’s lack of oversight

WENDY STUECK, Globe and Mail, Jul. 07, 2011

A provincial watchdog agency that oversees projects such as dams, mines and power plants is not doing enough to monitor and regulate projects it has approved, says a report by British Columbia Auditor-General John Doyle.

A geologist has coal mine questions

John M. Baxter and P.geol (ret), Comox Valley Echo, July 08, 2011

A letter to Rachel Shaw, Environmental Assessment Office:

Need is urgent for reform of mining rules

By Calvin Sandborn and Maya Stano, Times Colonist, July 2, 2011

Province failing in inspections and enforcement to protect environment

The current mining boom is sparking controversy across British Columbia. On Vancouver Island, a debate rages over a proposed Fanny Bay coal mine. First Nations have sued to suspend northeast coal exploration that threatens caribou. The plan to drain and kill Fish Lake triggered massive public resistance.

Reasonable people can disagree on the merits of particular mine projects.

But most British Columbians would be shocked to discover just how weak our mine regulatory system has become.

There is an urgent need to reform this environmental protection regime.

Coal mine needs independent enviro review, say critics

By Ben Christopher, The Tyee, June 10, 2011

An environmental group is raising concerns about the review process for a proposed coal mine on eastern Vancouver Island, despite assurances from the province.

Who Will Clean Up Our Mining Mess?

Christopher Pollon, The Tyee, May 23, 2011

The coming mining boom in BC's northwest has critics wondering if current clean-up and enforcement plans are enough. Special report with photo essay.

Acid mine drainage at Brucejack Lake
Acid rock drainage from an advanced exploration site at Brucejack Lake in northwest B.C, September 2010

Mining Is Key to BC's Future, Done Right

By Edward John, 30 Mar 2011,

While industry touts quick bonanzas, First Nations seek environmentally and culturally sustainable projects.

First Nations in British Columbia are calling for changes to the way mining is managed. We have seen the reports about how Canada is rich in resources, how mining is necessary to a prosperous future, and how certainty of process is essential.

Chinese group makes billion-dollar bet on B.C. coal

DAVID EBNER, Globe and Mail, Mar. 30, 2011

A Chinese group is making a $1-billion bet on coal in British Columbia to secure a key raw material for its steel making industry, the latest in a series of moves this year by international companies to stake a claim on Canadian resources.

Thousands of jobs forecasted for Chinese northern B.C. mining plan

Gordon Hoekstra, Prince George Citizen, March 29, 2011

Two Chinese coal companies and a steel maker are working with a Chinese company based in Vancouver to develop hundreds of millions of dollars worth of unique underground mines in northern B.C. that will provide thousands of jobs.

Tata Steel in talks to buy coal mines in western Canada

Shubhashish Nichani, Business Standard (Mumbai), March 23, 2011

British Columbian govt keen on deal; firm needs supply for European mills

The need for raw material integration for its European operations is keeping Tata Steel officials busy. The company has initiated talks with the government of British Columbia, a Canadian province, to acquire coking coal mines, sources say.

Taxpayers cover mining fallout

Marc Goudreau, Comox Valley Record, March 8, 2011

Dear editor,

With great interest I, as well as many others, have been following our provincial government’s move toward increasing mineral extraction in British Columbia.

Where do we send the bill for Tsolum River pollution?

Andrew Nicoll, Comox Valley Record, March 3, 2011

Dear editor,

Four and a half million dollars of taxpayers' money plus over 40 years loss of salmon in the Tsolum river because of an abandoned copper mine.

To whom do we send the bill? I assume the company abandoned all of its responsibilities along with the mine.

Not ONE but THREE coal mines in the CV now?

Grant Gordon, TideChange Comox Valley, Feb 27, 2011

Editor's Note: In response to an article today in the Victoria Times-Colonist
here Grant Gordon suggests the Raven coal project has a bigger dimension.
Lots of background information on the coal prospects of the Comox and Alberni valleys flows back and forth on the CoalWatch news server.

Hornby Islanders can't believe coal mine is being considered

Doug Carrick, Comox Valley Record, February 25, 2011

Compliance Energy Corp has applied to mine coal in the Fanny Bay area of Baynes Sound.

There couldn’t be a more treasured place in all of British Columbia. It shocks me that a coal mine could even be considered.

There is evidence of major coal plans

By Calvin Sandborn, Times Colonist, February 22, 2011

Re: "No other coal mines planned for Island," Feb. 18.

The letter from the CEO of the Raven coal project raises the central issue about the proposed Raven mine: Will this be the first of a number of mines in the vast coal reserve that stretches from Fanny Bay to near Campbell River?

Backgrounder: Bear Deposit and Anderson Lake Deposit

In 2004, Compliance Energy entered into a purchase agreement for what historically had been known as the Hamilton Lake Deposit.

The Folly of Coal Mines on Van Isle

Sarah Cox, Sierra Club of BC,  Feb 17, 2011

There are many compelling financial reasons to say no to the Raven coal mine. These include the potential loss of tourism, the increased cost to taxpayers of maintaining public roads, the health impacts of coal dust and associated costs, the possible loss of the thriving Baynes Sound shellfish industry which employs more than 500 people, and the impacts on salmon and habitat from the Raven mine and port activities. And then there is one more worrisome reason.

Harvard: Coal impacts cost public up to a half trillion dollars annually

Media release, Greenpeace, February 16, 2011

Harvard Medical School researcher estimates that the impacts of coal cost the public a third to over half a trillion dollars annually.

Flathead River Valley Far from Permanently Protected

Canadian Parks and Wilderness Committee, Sierra Club of BC, Wildsight, February 15, 2011

Legislation and compensation deal merely ink last year’s announcement, say conservation groups

Vancouver, B.C.—Legislation to prohibit mining and energy development in the Flathead River Valley is only the first of three steps the B.C. government must take to protect the Flathead permanently, say conservation groups.

Coal Mining in BC - Victoria, Feb 9

Coal In BC at UVic, Feb 9

Selected Presentations

Raven Underground Coal Mine Backgrounder
Arthur Caldicott, Victoria, February 2011

Undermining the Value of Clean Land and Water
Maya Stano, February 2011

Meeting allows coal-mining opponents to give views

Judith Lavoie, Times Colonist, February 09, 2011

Opponents to new coal mines on central Vancouver Island will hold their own version of a public hearing at the University of Victoria tonight.

"This is the first major meeting in Victoria on this issue," said Calvin Sandborn, Environmental Law Centre legal director.

Choose no-coal option

Robin Mumblo, Comox Valley Record, February 01, 2011

Dear editor,

Please, politicians, take the time this year to examine the consensus on the overwhelming amount of data about coal and climate change.

Please listen to your hearts, your heads and your constituents and stop the hypocrisy in our beautiful province.

Tony Pearse on Denman Island - Feb 8

Tony Pearse, Denman Opposes Coal, February 8, 7:30 pm

Tony Pearse on Denman Island, February 9, 2011

Locals join coal dust-up with Victoria

Cowichan News Leader, January 26, 2011

Peter Nix poured a bag of coal onto a blanket at the B.C. legislature Tuesday to send a message about coal exports from B.C.

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