Wednesday, August 06, 2014

The Mount Polley Mine Tailing Disaster....They All Knew.


And that included the provincial environment ministry.

The MoCo's Jennifer Sheppard has the story. Here is her lede:

The B.C. Ministry of Environment says it warned Imperial Metals about the Mount Polley mine tailings pond levels repeatedly before this week's devastating breach.

The breach of the tailings pond dam at the copper and gold mine near Likely, B.C., released 10 billion litres of water and 4.5 million cubic metres of metals-laden fine sand, contaminating several lakes, creeks and rivers in the Cariboo region on Monday.In an email to CBC News, a Ministry of Environment spokesperson said it gave the firm its latest of five warnings in May, this time for exceeding the permitted height of wastewater within the tailings pond...

And yet no action was taken.

It's almost worse than self-regulation, because at least then a government can feign ignorance.

Here, there is absolutely no such excuse.


Not to worry because

The Minister in charge, ol' turdstormer Bill himself, can really make 'em pay, like, at least 95 big ones.

And then the real boss can tell everybody that there really is no problem here because this was really just a failing of the Enviro Ministry's to implement our super-duper World Class rules and regulations.

As for the Premier...Isn't she on holiday or something?
And we note, with interest, that the uber non-conflicty CBC BC Ledge Bureau did not, it would appear, receive the Email from the environment ministry that spilled the beans on this one.



Anonymous said...

A while back there was a breach of an old dam near Oliver.

That little disaster inspired the various ministries to undertake a MASSIVE review of anything that held back liquids - including tailing ponds.

So yeah... they knew.

ron wilton said...

I fear the worst is yet to come.

How sensitive will the migrating salmon and other fishes be to the poisons now entering their spawning grounds on myriad inter connected lakes, rivers and streams?

Will they survive? Will the ecosystem that hinges on their cycle survive?

We must stop this continual degradation of our province before we destroy the only thing of value we all really have and leaving it up to the current brand of politicians to protect us from this corporate greed and desecration is no solution at all.

Anonymous said...

Imperial Metals president Brian Kynoch would be a hell of a lot more sorry if he was in jail with all the companies’ assets frozen to be used to compensate all the innocent people that have had their livelihood and property values wiped out
This self-regulating nonsense has to stop. The Government officials and the Minister in charge are totally complicit in this disaster and should also be criminally charged.

Anonymous said...

4tears ago in Oliver bc

Bc and corporate safe bc.?

Don F. said...

Kooteney Bill was just on CBC defending the mining company and his ministry, Carol Mcneil caught him red handed in his lies, priceless to watch! Bill squirming as he does.
This was followed by an in review with a foreman of the mine saying he has been arguing with the brass for two years that this would happen, in fact there were two smaller breaches in may on his watch that the ministry of Mr. Bennet knows happened but is denying.
God help us all!

motorcycleguy said...

Not only are dams for tailing ponds a known are dams for IPP "run of river" power projects. Yeah, I know....they call them weirs. On the Sunshine Coast these projects also use penstocks to drain high alpine lakes. The penstock welds are not subject to any review by the BC Safety fact the Authority didn't even know any penstocks operated above 150 psi when in fact many are above 1000psi. What don't they know about the dams used? I was told all records of piping inspections were property of the IPP and were not available for public scrutiny. Wonder if that is the same for their dams too. C'mon Bennett....just what percentage of the electorate are you counting on not to know that water (and sh** for that matter) runs downhill?

Chuckstraight said...

I wish I could run away from BC-but where would one go?

Arleigh Chase said...

It's interesting that the Ministry of the Environment couldn't be bothered to do their job in enforcing the rules in place to prevent this kind of disaster.

My family was part of a group of Likely placer miners forced off our leases by a constant campaign of governmental harassment in the 1990s. Funnily enough, we placer miners were held to a much higher standard by the Ministry when it came to environmental remediation - a standard which we gladly exceeded. Imperial Metals, I now understand, was allowed to remediate on the honours system.

But that's hardly a surprise given the fact that the company that overstaked properties on which placer operators in the area were forced out just happens to be... Imperial Metals.

And I bet dollars to doughnuts that Imperial Metals is allowed to conduct satellite gps surveys - a condition to maintaining one's leases. We were denied the use of satellite gps surveys - meaning that our only option was to engage a surveyor at a cost of $15,000 as opposed to the $350 cost of a gps survey. This prohibitive cost and the fact that our company was to illegally lose its grandfather rights by being forced to restake meant that we were forced off in favour of Imperial Metals.

Frankly, I'd like to see this company and its beneficial owners destroyed by the financial penalties it should rightfully pay for this debacle - but do we really expect the Liberals to do anything when it has allowed this company to be coddled along with minimal enforcement of regulations? No. I don't anyway.

North Van's Grumps said...

The BC Liberals haven't realized that their made in British Columbia "montreal maine and atlantic railway" has derailed

Anonymous said...

Where is she, where is she .. anyone seen her helping hand and reassurance through all this????

I see, she would be a distraction if she got involved. I guess the longer she and everyone involved avoids dealing with it, the longer they can think up spin words .. which the MSM will be happy to help them out with in reporting. Doug

kitty litter said...

corruption + greed = deregulation,going down the same path as the good ol' U.S.A.

Don F. said...

After re-reading the comments above one especially made me think and ponder on things that my immediate anger with this government clouded.
The comment is from Ron Wilton, thanks Ron.

In his comment Ron asks will the Salmon and other fishes survive? Will the ecosystems that hinges on their cycle survive?
When one really considers the far reaching effects of this act, I mean the effect it can have on so many things and lives of not only people but all creatures and even plant it becomes overwhelming.
The fact that our government cares so little about all of that and can fail us so blatantly. The fact that even now they choose to lie to our face. Well I say no more.

Anonymous said...

Follow the money

RossK said...

Is it not interesting that, when things of actual import surface that need to be actually dealt with be an actual 'leader' that our current Premier disappears?

(unless, of course, the calculations and fgroups indicate an almost sure thing poll numbers bump..Q ratings and all that, I guess)

Thanks for a vigorous thread everyone...We're in Stinson's Beach now...Right next to Bolinas Bay... Two Gentlemen of Verona in Ashland was very good.