Is it possible that Energy Minister Bill Bennett handlers haven't found a way to know when, or how, to shut the Minister up?
Is this why former Premier Gordon Campbell never trusted the man, why there was a need to take Bennett out to the farm shed? (CBC backgrounder c/w video)
If Bennett had just kept his cool and ignored Juneau Empire Editor he could have kept British Columbian failed mining statistics on tailing pond practices to himself, thereby keeping the public in the dark, Americans too.
However, with his claim of "160 years of mining in British Columbia" came a gold nugget of data information, maybe even written for the Minister of Energy himself and all he had to do was find a wedge issue. Why not write an obscure letter to a Foreign Country newspaper.
Let us start off by addressing the first portion of Mr. Bennet’s piece when he states it was “unfortunate your editorial has seized upon the Mount Polley mine tailings storage facility failure to undermine the long tradition of respectful relations and co-operation between British Columbia and Alaska on mining development and environmental protection.”
Perhaps Mr. Bennett has forgotten about the Tulsequah Chief Mine. Southeast Alaska has not forgotten.
50-plus years of pollution
The Tulsequah Chief Mine, located south of Juneau on the Taku River just across the Canadian border, has leached acid runoff into the Taku River since its closure in the 1950s. The Taku boasts notable salmon runs, the same runs which in turn give jobs to many commercial fishermen. There were efforts to revitalize the mine, but those failed for financial reasons and to this day acid continues to taint the Taku. ......
Thank You Bill!!!
Where's the Minister of Environment?
Ahhh, the sheer beauty of the Energy Minister providing the key words needed to find the source, the proof of the existence of "160 years of mining" bordering not just Alaska but Washington, Alberta and the Yukon. How many tailings ponds are leaking already from a database of 1,696 (not all with ponds)?
A Google Earth KML file, created for Bill Bennett's pleasure, now lays at foreign press feet, and bloggers too:
Index of GeoFiles
GeoFile 2012-03: A KML file to Display Producing Mines in British Columbia at Any Range or Point of Time in the Last 160 Years
View GeoFile 2012-03 (PDF, 375 KB);Download KMZ (96 KB)The KML file MinFile_production_ts.kmz contains 1,696 past and current producing mines over the last 160 years in British Columbia that can be displayed at any range or point of time by using the Time Slider on Google Earth®. Only mines with known operating years are included in this KML file. More mines and detailed information can be found on the MINFILE Mineral Inventory website at http://www.empr.gov.bc.ca/Mining/Geoscience/MINFILE/Pages/default.aspx.All publications of the BC Geological Survey are available digitally, free of charge, from this website.
Mount Polley Tailing Pond spill not mentioned for 2014/2015
The Real Gold Nugget to this Google Earth File is that it will tell you, the private land owner, the hounder of rock collecting, if there is something insidious lurking nearby. Who would have guessed that Bowen Island was not only manufacturer of bricks but it also had a Gold/Copper mine.... Britannia Beach island hopping crossover.