Roger William.

Roger William.

TNG oppose Amarc’s mining exploration in Upper Taseko

Two Tsilhqot'in communities are saying no to further mining exploration by Amarc Resources Ltd.

Two Tsilhqot’in communities are saying no to further mining exploration by Amarc Resources Ltd. in the headwaters of the Upper Taseko and Dasiqox Tribal Park areas.

“Amarc already drilled 18 holes for their exploration program, and recently received Provincial approval for an additional 50 holes within the claim area for the Ike project,” said Xeni Gwet’in Chief Roger William. “None of these approvals have received the consent of the Tsilhqot’in. The cumulative effects of these applications and approvals should not be overlooked.”

William said his community and Yunesit’in have told Amarc and the Province that the Upper Taseko is a ‘no go zone’ and have requested high-level discussions about ongoing land-use planning concerns.

The exploration project is in its early stages and does not have any environmental impacts, said Jason Quigley,  a spokesperson for Amarc, noting the site is accessed by helicopter.

“We’ve gone to extraordinary efforts to ensure the Tsilhqot’in Nation and other First Nations in the region are consulted and have an opportunity to influence and benefit from the project,” he said. “The drill program is fully permitted and we will go forward with it some time this summer.”

With the exploration project Amarc is drilling for copper, molybdenum, silver and other minerals, Quigley said.

William said members of Xeni Gwet’in and Yunesit’in last met with Amarc in 2014.

“They showed us a proposed agreement, we communicated and talked about it, and at the end of the day in 2015 we informed Amarc of the no-go zone.”

In early 2016, the two communities communicated further to Amarc through the Tsilhqot’in National Government that other Tsilhqot’in communities were interested in exploration in their area, William added.

“This is very much similar to Fish Lake and the New Prosperity Mine proposal. It’s a very sensitive area,” William said.

“The Whitebark Pine in the area is becoming a bit of a concern because it’s important food for grizzlies and it’s been more than 20 years since there’s been any real research done on it.”

William said although only one per cent of drilling projects actually result in a mine being developed, he cannot imagine an open pit mine going into the headwaters of Taseko Lake and the possible impacts the mine would have.

“It was clear when we had meetings with the communities that we were not given the mandate to entertain such a reckless endeavour,” said Yunesit’in Chief Russell Myers Ross in a press release.

“These kinds of decisions reaffirm why our communities are pursuing the development of the Dasiqox Tribal Park and why we are turning away from those that will not abide by our vision for the land.”

Amarc’s Ike project is located approximately 25 kilometers as the crow flies from Xeni Gwet’in.

“Last year we flew out by helicopter and checked the area and saw a lot of signs of wildlife,” William said.

Story updated from Friday’s with comments from Amarc

 

 

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Lil Mack has been a member of Cariboo Chilcotin Partners for Literacy since its inception. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
Lil Mack of Williams Lake honoured with BC Achievement Community Award

Mack has been an ever-present, quietly powerful literacy force in Williams Lake for several decades

Thompson Rivers University (TRU) announced Tuesday, May 11 that all washrooms on its Kamloops and Williams Lake campuses will have free menstrual products by September. (Monica Lamb-Yorski photo - Williams Lake Tribune)
TRU to provide free hygiene products in all washrooms by fall 2021

“By signing the United Way’s Promise campaign, TRU aims to reduce barriers facing some students.”

FILE - In this April 19, 2021, file photo, Keidy Ventura, 17, receives her first dose of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine in West New York, N.J. States across the country are dramatically scaling back their COVID-19 vaccine orders as interest in the shots wanes, putting the goal of herd immunity further out of reach. (AP Photo/Seth Wenig, File)
5 more deaths, 131 new cases of COVID-19 in Interior Health over the weekend

Those 18-years and older in high-transmission neighbourhoods can register for the vaccine

(File photo)
High-visibility arrest in Williams Lake nets BB gun, mistaken for assault rifle

RCMP thought the man was carrying an M16 assault-style rifle

letters
LETTER: Improvements needed at Scout Island

The City can do better managing their responsibilities

A bullet hole is seen in the windshield of an RCMP vehicle approximately 4 km from Vancouver International Airport after a one person was killed during a shooting outside the international departures terminal at the airport, in Richmond, B.C., Sunday, May 9, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Homicide team IDs man in fatal YVR shooting as police grapple with spate of gang violence

Man, 20, charged in separate fatal shooting Burnaby over the weekend

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

Dr. Bonnie Henry talks about phase two in B.C.’s COVID-19 immunization plan. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
All of B.C. will eventually ease out of COVID-19 restrictions at same time: Henry

People who have received two doses of a vaccine can’t yet return to post-pandemic activities with each other, she says

Winnipeg Jets’ Andrew Copp (9) and Edmonton Oilers goaltender Mike Smith (41) watch an incoming shot during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, April 26, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
‘Very jealous’: Canadian teams can’t take advantage of NHL’s relaxed COVID-19 rules

League eased some tight COVID-19 health and safety protocols over the weekend for fully vaccinated clubs

A map of Huu-ay-aht-owned forestry cutblock. (SUBMITTED PHOTO)
B.C. First Nations restrict access to territory in wake of forestry standoffs

Huu-ay-aht set up checkpoints after heated and dangerous incidents on southwest Vancouver Island

RCMP are searching for Philip Toner, who is a ‘person of interest’ in the investigation of a suspicious death in Kootenay National Park last week. Photo courtesy BC RCMP.
RCMP identify ‘person of interest’ in Kootenay National Park suspicious death

Police are looking for Philip Toner, who was known to a woman found dead near Radium last week

Vancouver Canucks goaltender Thatcher Demko (35) makes a save on Winnipeg Jets’ Nate Thompson (11) during second period NHL action in Winnipeg, Monday, May 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Fred Greenslade
Vancouver Canucks see NHL playoff hopes dashed despite 3-1 win over Winnipeg

Montreal Canadiens earn final North Division post-season spot

The B.C. legislature went from 85 seats to 87 before the 2017 election, causing a reorganization with curved rows and new desks squeezed in at the back. The next electoral boundary review could see another six seats added. (Black Press files)
B.C. election law could add 6 seats, remove rural protection

North, Kootenays could lose seats as cities gain more

The Independent Investigations Office of B.C. is investigating the shooting of an Indigenous woman in the Ucluelet First Nation community of Hitacu. (Black Press Media file photo)
B.C. First Nation wants ‘massive change’ after its 3rd police shooting in less than a year

Nuu-chah-nulth woman recovering from gunshot wounds in weekend incident near Ucluelet

Most Read