B.C. Mine Proposed In Critical Caribou Habitat

"If the newly proposed Sukunka coal mine follows the same trajectory as nearly every project reviewed under the province’s environmental assessment process, it will be approved even if it is found to have harmful effects on caribou"

"B.C. is considering a proposal for a new coal mine, planned in the heart of critical habitat for the endangered Quintette caribou herd in the province’s Peace region.

The population of the Quintette herd, which roams the mountains near Tumbler Ridge where the Sukunka coal mine would be built, dropped from an estimated 173 to 74 animals between 2008 and 2018.

In a map submitted to the province by the project’s proponent Glencore, coloured dots indicate how the Quintette herd utilizes the mountain range year round, roaming areas that will be impacted by multiple open pits, roads, a tailings pond and other mining facilities — should the project go ahead.

Chief Roland Willson of West Moberly First Nations said it’s frustrating to see a new mine proposed in a region of B.C. where extraordinary measures are being taken to bring caribou back from the brink, including the nation’s costly maternity penning project for the endangered Klinse-Za herd that includes 24-hour armed security for pregnant cows and calves."

Jimmy Thomson reports for The Narwhal June 11, 2020.

Source: The Narwhal, 06/15/2020