By Matteo Cimellaro, Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
An online form and $58.75.
That is what it takes to claim a mining stake in the traditional territory of the Gitxaała Nation, according to a written submission to the B.C. Supreme Court. At no point in the process does the mining claim, accessed through a provincial portal, ask the individual or company applying for it to consult with the nation.
For this reason, the Gitxaała Nation is challenging B.C.’s Mineral Tenure Act in a case that will test whether the province’s legal commitment to recognizing the rights of Indigenous Peoples has the teeth to change laws.
Continue reading First Nation launches court challenge testing B.C.’s legal commitment to recognizing Indigenous rights →
National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
The impact of mining on key salmon watersheds in northwestern Canada and the U.S. is impossible to gauge because of a lack of transparency and access to data.
That was one conclusion of a cross-border study involving a team of experts in salmon ecology, watershed science, mining policy that surveyed the intersection of mining risk with important salmon habitat, ranging from Montana to Alaska as well as B.C. and the Yukon.
Continue reading Mining risks for Pacific Northwest salmon murky due to lack of transparent data →
By Matt Simmons, The Narwhal, Local Journalism Initiative reporter
Six years after the Mount Polley disaster, B.C. and international regulatory organizations are still failing to make mining safe, according to several groups monitoring the industry.
Continue reading Six Years Later: Mount Polley Disaster Recommendations Not Implemented →
Twenty-four million cubic meters of silt, metals and water spilled into the adjacent waterways, when the Mount Polley tailings pond dam breached. It has been called one of Canada’s worst environmental disasters. The province’s independent review panel made six recommendations, one of which was that tailings and water should not be mixed anymore in BC. This did not please the mining companies who say dry stacking of tailings would cost too much. The Clark Government appears to concur. An application to restart Mount Polley, with tailings in water, is under consideration. The Secwepemc Peoples regard this as “a violation of sovereignty” which “opens the territory up to further damage.” Is BC setting the stage for another Mount Polley Disaster?
Continue reading Is BC Setting The Stage For Another Mount Polley Disaster? →