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   NEWS RELEASE   

For Immediate Release

2008ENV0100-001799

Nov. 24, 2008

Ministry of Environment

 

HERMANN COAL MINE PROJECT APPROVED

 


VICTORIA – Western Canadian Coal Corp. (the proponent) has received an environmental assessment (EA) certificate for its Hermann Coal Mine Project.

 

Environment Minister Barry Penner and Energy and Mines and Petroleum Resources Minister Richard Neufeld made the decision to grant the EA certificate after considering the review led by B.C.’s Environmental Assessment Office.

 

The project, an open-pit mine with a capacity to produce 0.8 to 1.1 million tonnes per year of metallurgical coal over 10 years, will be located in northeastern British Columbia, approximately 16 km (33 km by road) west of Tumbler Ridge. The coal will be hauled by truck to the proponent’s nearby Wolverine Coal Mine for processing.

 

The EAO Assessment Report concludes the project should not have significant adverse effects, based on the mitigation measures and commitments included as conditions of the EA certificate. Before the project can proceed, the proponent will still need to obtain the necessary provincial licences, leases and other approvals.

 

The provincial EA certificate contains more than 100 commitments the proponent must implement throughout various stages of the project. Key commitments include the following:

 

·        Ensure adequate diversion and sediment control to minimize stream sedimentation.

·        Monitor water quality and implement contingency measures to ensure water quality remains within acceptable limits.

·        Manage agreed upon water quality objectives.

·        Monitor and manage the generation of selenium.

·        Restore wildlife habitat at closure with a focus on caribou.

·        Contribute to further caribou studies and stewardship of the Quintette caribou herd.

·        Manage and minimize dust emissions.

 

The Treaty 8 First Nations were consulted on the assessment and the Province is satisfied the Crown’s duties to consult First Nations have been discharged.

 

Capital costs are estimated at $55 million and the project is expected to generate approximately 100 jobs annually over the 10 year life-span of the mine. Once the project is in operation, it is estimated that over the life of the mine the proponent will pay at least $52 million in provincial and local government taxes.

 

More information on the environmental assessment certificate can be found at:  www.eao.gov.bc.ca

 

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Media

contact:

Kate Thompson

Manager, Media Relations

250 953-4577

 

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