Business

B.C. promotes search for new mines

An aerial magnetic survey of mineral deposits has added to previous work by private companies to encourage exploratory drilling in the area of B.C. hit hard by the mountain pine beetle epidemic. - Geoscience BC
An aerial magnetic survey of mineral deposits has added to previous work by private companies to encourage exploratory drilling in the area of B.C. hit hard by the mountain pine beetle epidemic.
— image credit: Geoscience BC

The B.C. government is aiming to reverse a slide in mineral exploration investment that has come after world metal prices peaked and then declined to a 10-year average level in the past two years.

Premier Christy Clark and Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett helped open the annual Association for Mineral Exploration B.C.'s conference in Vancouver Monday with a pair of announcements.

Clark told delegates the province's mining exploration tax credit will be extended for another year in the B.C. budget to be tabled in February. That is expected to provide $10 million for exploration.

Geoscience BC, an industry research organization started by the province in 2005, also released results of its latest aerial survey to identify new mineral potential in the B.C. Interior.

"Every time GeoscienceBC does a project like this, in the ensuing three or four years you see a significant bump in exploration activity in the area where the survey was done," Bennett said in an interview.

He added that much of B.C.'s Interior is covered by glacial till from the ice age that ended 10,000 years ago, making traditional mineral prospecting impossible over large areas.

He said the tax credit is similar to what B.C. provides for deep drilling and other unconventional natural gas exploration, but on a smaller scale. It supports junior mining companies and is not a subsidy to established corporations, he said.

Clark told the mining conference that the government is halfway to its election commitment of 17 new and expanded mines in B.C., including the new Mt. Milligan copper mine and others that have received permits.

She also referred to the need for a review of B.C.'s environmental assessment system.

"My belief is that the process over the years has gotten less certain, less predictable, and probably not as efficient as people would like," Clark told reporters after her speech.

 

We encourage an open exchange of ideas on this story's topic, but we ask you to follow our guidelines for respecting community standards. Personal attacks, inappropriate language, and off-topic comments may be removed, and comment privileges revoked, per our Terms of Use. Please see our FAQ if you have questions or concerns about using Facebook to comment.

You might like ...

Reflecting on pedestrian safety
 
Where birdwatchers migrate
 
Countdown to Christmas... is your home sparkling and bright?
Province legislates rates for container truckers
 
Ford opts for Mexico for engine plant: Unifor
 
Coast Salish tribes gather for water ceremony before NEB hearings
Peek-a-view
 
Seating switch irks wrestlers
 
Skating Club Halloween Howl

Community Events, October 2014

Add an Event

Read the latest eEdition

Browse the print edition page by page, including stories and ads.

Oct 23 edition online now. Browse the archives.