Raven coal mine concerns heard

CoalWatch and Tsolum River groups oppose application by Compliance

The regional district board heard several concerns Tuesday about another coal licence application from Compliance Coal Corporation. The company — which is the proponent of the proposed Raven underground coal mine in Baynes Sound and which holds a 60 per cent interest in the Bear Coal Deposit south of Comox Lake — has also expressed interest in exploring coal resources near Anderson Lake above Forbidden Plateau north of Comox Lake.

Compliance says it has no intention of exploring either the Bear Coal or Anderson Lake deposits, even if government approves the Raven project. The Anderson Lake application was made in 2007, since which the Province has held it in abeyance. Nevertheless, if the deposit is developed, CoalWatch Comox Valley questions what type of environmental review process it would encounter.

Mindful of changes in federal and provincial review processes, and proposed changes in the Fisheries Act, CoalWatch president John Snyder feels the review process on the Raven proposal will be a thing of the past.

“With the Anderson Lake coal licence in the application phase, we have a special opportunity that was unavailable to us on the Raven and Bear Coal licences,” Snyder said. “We have the opportunity to say ‘NO NOW’ before anything moves forward.”

At the last committee of the whole session, directors approved a letter to the chief inspector of mines to inform terms and conditions of the licence submitted by Compliance.

“Why would the CVRD board not simply say no to this application given the fact that the Province and federal government ministries have not heeded the requests from the CVRD for an independent and comprehensive assessment process,” David Stapley said.

He was referring to a board resolution to oppose further processing of the Raven application until senior levels of government conducted comprehensive aquifer mapping, undertaken baseline studies of affected flora and fauna, and appointed an independent scientific panel to review the application.

Wayne White of the Tsolum River Restoration Society also asked the board to oppose the application.

“My feeling is the Comox Valley can grow without coal,” said Area A director Bruce Jolliffe, noting the granting of coal licences is a discretionary practice, as per the gold commissioner.

He called for an amended letter requesting no licence be issued due to concern that coal mine exploration, and further exploration, impacts existing industries. His motion passed.

 

CoalWatch reminded the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency of a legal obligation to assess “cumulative environmental effects that are likely to result from the project in combination with other projects or activities that have or will be carried out.” The board agreed to include the wording in the policy comments in the letter.

 

 

Just Posted

Moms of those killed by illicit opioids take to B.C. Legislature in call for action

Moms Stop the Harm, a nationwide network of families who have lost loved ones to overdoses rally

Taxing Vancouver Island

Big Read: find out which communities are paying the lowest and highest taxes on Vancouver Island

Y2K Spitfire comes home

Stocky Edwards guest of honour at banquet

Crown Isle acquires Longlands Golf Course

The Crown Isle Resort and Golf Community just got a little bit… Continue reading

Heliports certified at Comox Valley, Campbell River hospitals

Both sites should see heliports up and running by late summer

VIDEO: Canadian toddler caught practising hockey skills in crib

Eli Graveline is getting praise from far and wide as the internet freaks out of cute throwback video

Amalgamation fails in North Cowichan and Duncan

North Cowichan says yes, but Duncan says no

B.C. teacher ends Jeopardy! winning streak, taking home US$69,000

Ali Hasan, from New Westminster, has been gaining fans as a “one-man invasion,” says Alex Trebek

Jett Woo highlights 5 Canucks choices on Day 2 of NHL entry draft

WHL star out of Moose Jaw tabbed in Round 2

Lawyer fired in B.C. courtroom during trial for dangerous driving causing death

Dustin Dennis Zinter was charged following November 2015 accident near Nanaimo, B.C.

In a matter of hours, women in Saudi Arabia will be allowed to drive

Change was announced as a royal decree in 2017 by Crown Prince Mohammen bin Salman

Feds announce measures to protect endangered whale species

Canada’s Whale Initiative is part of the federal government’s $1.5 billion Ocean Protection Plan

COC session vote approves Calgary as potential host for 2026 Olympics

Scott Hutcheson, chair of Calgary’s Olympic bid corporation — called vote a positive step forward

Mounties seize 1,500 pot plants in ‘extensive Shawnigan raid

Mounties searched a property in the 4800-block of Goldstream Heights Drive on May 30

Most Read