Council sends SLR back to question KGHM

By Tanya Cronin
March 21, 2016 - 5:01pm Updated: March 21, 2016 - 5:38pm

KAMLOOPS — An 18,000 page application to the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office, it is KGHM Ajax quest to gain approval for the proposed copper-gold mine, south of Kamloops.

But now, more than 2 months after its submission, questions are being raised about the validity of the report.

SLR Consulting - hired by the City of Kamloops has pored over the fine details of the document.

Today they answered to their employer as the mayor and council had the opportunity to weigh in on the company's findings.

WATCH: Full story by Reporter Tanya Cronin

Mayor Peter Milobar says, “everyone has had the same concerns around air quality, blasting and noise. We need clarification on those types of things.”

SLR has sifted through over 8-hundred questions and comments submitted by the city and residents, only to find more information is needed.

Councillor Tina Lange says, “they believe there will be a reduction in property values. There will be more of an impact on fish and bird habitats. They're concerned about modeling used for air dispersion. I think it re-affirms that the mine is just in the wrong place.”

From air quality, property values, noise vibration and the overall health of residents - SLR consulting revealed significant gaps and insufficient data in KGHM's application.

The biggest related to dust and the mining company's promise for 94% mitigation.

Lange says, “it seems impossible to me and when I hear things like that in their application, I start to worry about some of the facts and figures they've given us.”

Councillor Ken Christian says, “some of the questions I asked today were about at-risk populations and some of the impacts on children versus adults, and some of the impacts on people living closest or working there. Those questions are answerable but they just need the evidence."

Whether or not the elevations of the mine's pit and tailings pond will impact ground water concerns in Aberdeen, was another hot topic among Councillors.

With close to half of its 300-thousand dollar budget remaining, SLR consulting still has plenty of answers to uncover.

City officials say the Ajax copper-gold mine is an evidence based decision and urge the public not to jump to conclusions until all the facts are in.

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