Responding to the layoffs announced at Gibraltar Mine north of Williams Lake this week, B.C.’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation Bruce Ralston said the ministry is working diligently to see the situation resolved as quickly as possible. (Taseko Mines photo)

Responding to the layoffs announced at Gibraltar Mine north of Williams Lake this week, B.C.’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation Bruce Ralston said the ministry is working diligently to see the situation resolved as quickly as possible. (Taseko Mines photo)

Gibraltar Mine permit change consultation period extended to May 7, 2021: energy and mines minister

“We are working dilgently to see this resolved as quickly as possible,” minister said

B.C. mines minister Bruce Ralston said Thursday he was concerned to hear about layoffs at Gibraltar Mine north of Williams Lake announced earlier this week.

“I hope the situation can be resolved with minimum impacts,” Ralston noted in an e-mailed statement. “We will do everything we can to support the workers, their families and the community during this difficult time.”

On Tuesday, April 20, Williams Lake’s mayor Walt Cobb and Taseko Mines vice-president of corporate affairs Brian Battison said 40 to 60 people were being laid off, effective April 27, because the mine is awaiting approval to reactivate its Gibraltar East pit.

The process began in May 2020, they said.

Read more: Gibraltar Mine laying off 40 to 60 workers, awaiting permission to reopen existing pit

Ralston confirmed the province is consulting on a permit change and a 30-day extension was recently granted until May 7, 2021 to allow time for further consultation.

“We are working diligently to see this resolved as quickly as possible. Our government’s priority is to ensure all voices are heard during the consultation process and that projects are processed in a fair and timely manner.”

During the committee of the whole meeting at city hall Tuesday, April 20, Cobb said that the process had changed and that was causing the hold up.

Normal circumstances require the company to give notice of intent to do so by filling out what is called a notice of departure with the Ministry of Energy and Mines, Cobb said, reading from a statement from Taseko Mines, noting regulators have decided this now requires more than a notice of departure, saying an amendment to the existing permit is needed which requires a process of consultation.

When asked if the process has changed, the ministry responded Thursday that it has not.

Part 10.1.18 of the Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in B.C. states that the owner, agent or manager shall notify the chief permitting officer in writing of any intention to depart from the mine’s plan and reclamation program authorized under sections 10.1 or 10.1.2 of this code to any substantial degree, and shall not proceed to implement the proposed changes without the written authorization of the chief permitting office, a ministry spokesperson said.

“Gibraltar Mining Ltd. has applied for amendments to their Mines Act Permit and Environmental Management Act Permit. The amended Mines Act permit allows for an expansion of the Gibraltar East pit and storage of waste rock from that pit.”

Water management is a key consideration and waste rock volume, characteristics, and storage location can influence the quality of water discharged from the site, the ministry noted.

Additionally, an amendment to the Environmental Management Act Permit is required for the proposed water storage area in Granite Pit to ensure the protection of groundwater relied upon by down gradient residents for drinking water and potential impact to Cuisson Lake.

Read more: Tsilhqot’in National Government appeals Gibraltar Mines’ permit to discharge into Fraser River

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

miningWilliams Lake

Just Posted

Bella Coola Valley. (Scott Carrier photo)
Nuxalk Nation closes recreation, sports fisheries at Bella Coola due to COVID-19 concerns

Nobody is supposed to be travelling, said marine use manager Peter Siwallace

Michelle Jacobs receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine at the Coast Capri Hotel on April 28, 2021. The pop-up clinic was hosted by the First Nations Health Authority. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
126 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

There are 22 individuals hospitalized due to the virus, and 13 in intensive care

A Cariboo Regional District director and School District 27 trustee, Angie Delainey is also a fourth generation business owner in downtown Williams Lake. (Angie Mindus photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Angie Delainey appointed Cariboo Regional District representative on regional board

Delainey and Steve Forseth represent the CRD at the North Central Local Government Association

Pauline Schmutz, 75, receives her COVID-19 vaccine from public health nurse Donna McKenzie on Tuesday, April 13 at the community clinic at Thompson Rivers University Williams Lake campus. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Additional COVID-19 vaccine clinics scheduled for Horsefly, Big Lake

Anyone 18 and over who has not received a vaccine yet is encouraged to register

A prowling coyote proved no match for a stray black cat who chased it out of a Port Moody parking lot Friday, May 14. (Twitter/Screen grab)
VIDEO: Little but fierce: Cat spotted chasing off coyote by Port Moody police

The black cat is seen jumping out from under a parked car and running the wild animal out of a vacant lot

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Announced Tuesday, May 18 by Public Safety Minister Mike Farnworth, the province added gyms, dance and fitness studios to its list of places where face coverings are mandatory (AP/Steven Senne)
Masks now required at all times inside B.C. gyms, including during workouts

The province added gyms, dance and fitness studios to its list of places where face coverings are mandatory Tuesday

Reinhard “Bud” Loewen of Abbotsford has now been charged with 21 counts of sexual assault related to his massage business. (Facebook photo)
Former Abbotsford masseur now faces 21 counts of sexual assault

Bud Loewen of Bud’s Massage Therapy initally faced three charges

Over the years, police have worked with sketch artists to draw what the boys could have looked like at the times of their deaths. (Vancouver Police Department)
DNA breakthrough expected in cold case involving murdered Vancouver boys, 7 and 8

Forensic analysts are working to identify relatives of the children, whose bodies were found in Stanley Park in 1953

Livestock competitions have been part of the Pacific National Exhibiton for more than a century. (Maple Ridge News files)
B.C. provides $50 million to keep major tourist attractions going

Tour bus companies also eligible for latest COVID-19 aid

Derek Descoteau with his trusty dog Harvey. (Photo submitted)
Friends provide continuing comfort for family in wake of unresolved senseless B.C. murder

Case remains before the courts five years after Derek Descoteau’s abrupt stabbing death in Chemainus

The top photo is of a real carbine rifle, while the bottom photo is the airsoft rifle seized from a Kelowna man on May 15. (Contributed)
RCMP issue warning: ‘Imitation firearms need to be dealt with responsibly’

A man brandishing his airsoft rifle in public had his weapon seized by Mounties on Saturday

Abbotsford Regional Hospital. (Black Press Media files)
Canada marks 25,000 COVID-19 deaths since the pandemic began

6 in every 10,000 Canadians died of COVID-19 since March 9, 2020

Most Read