Lake says city concerns will be heard
Concerns expressed by the city hall regarding the proposed Ajax copper and gold mine south of Aberdeen will come through loud and clear, according to Terry Lake, the province’s environment minister and B.C. Liberal MLA for Kamloops-North Kamloops.
“The city’s concerned that some of their infrastructure or future planning will be affected,” Lake said.
“They are part of the working group, so their concerns will be brought to the table.”
City council voted this week to send a letter to the provincial Ministry of Environment expressing some of its concerns, which include the transportation route from the mine site to the Coquihalla Highway, the location of power lines and the effect the mine operation may have on groundwater in Aberdeen.
Lake said those concerns will be heard, and dealt with as necessary, during the assessment process.
Meanwhile, due to the concerns from Kamloops residents and because of the proposed mine’s proximity to the city, the province has extended the public-comment period.
Originally set for 45 days, the public-comment period has been extended to 75 days, to March 27.
To comment and to read what others have said about the proposal, go online to eao.gov.bc.ca/pcp/comments/Ajax_Comments.html.
The mine is expected to bring 1,330 direct and indirect jobs during the two-year construction phase, and another 380 direct jobs once the mine is operational.
The company also expects the mine to generate $115 million in municipal tax revenue over its estimated 23-year lifespan.
Located within the City of Kamloops boundaries and two kilometres from a pair of Aberdeen elementary schools, the Ajax mine operation would stretch west to the Coquihalla Highway and is part of the old Afton Mine site.
The mine is expected to produce about 50,000 tons of copper and 100,000 ounces of gold per year for the life of its operation.