Kemess Underground Project Gets Green Light
Prince George, B.C.- The Province has issued an environmental assessment certificate to AuRico Metals Inc. for the Kemess Underground project which is about 430 kms northwest of Prince George.,
There are 33 conditions attached to the approval, including:
* Establish an Environmental Monitoring Committee to share information and discuss topics of interest to Tse Keh Nay and government agencies.
* Monitor surface water and groundwater quality.
* Treat effluent from the tailings-storage facility until it is acceptable for release into the environment.
* Ensure selenium concentrations in a downstream creek do not increase as a result of the project.
* Develop a Wildlife Management and Monitoring Plan to address effects on caribou, birds, bats and alpine species.
In addition, AuRico Metals Inc. proposed a number of significant design changes prior to and during the environmental assessment, based on feedback received from Tse Keh Nay, local governments and the public:
* Develop the project as an underground mine to minimize production of waste rock and reduce the amount of new surface disturbance.
* Use the old Kemess South pit as the tailings-storage facility, eliminating the need to use Amazay Lake, which has high cultural and historical importance to Tse Keh Nay, and avoid development within the lake’s watershed.
* Avoid constructing a proposed road corridor along Upper El Condor Creek and Kemess Lake by using a tunnel to minimize landslide, avalanche and weather risks.
In addition to federal environmental assessment approval, AuRico Metals Inc. still needs federal, provincial and local government permits to proceed.
The $683.9-million project is expected to produce approximately 24,650 tonnes of ore per day over a 13-year period.