This Election, Vote Mining

Trent Ernst, Editor

Not sure who is going to get your vote this election? Torn between the two candidates with Tumbler Ridge connections?

Last week, the Mining Association of BC (MABC), the Mining Suppliers Association of BC (MSABC), the Association for Mineral Exploration BC (AME BC), and the Coal Association of Canada (CAC) launched a campaign to encourage people to Vote Mining this election.

The campaign does not favour any one party or candidate. At its heart, the campaign (found online at www.votemining.ca) features a list of questions to ask candidates to find out how they will support “a strong and vibrant exploration, mining and mineral processing industry in British Columbia.”

For example, by using the website’s “Take Action” tool users can create and email a letter addressed to candidates in their electoral district.

The site also contains mining industry fact sheets, a “voter toolkit” of resources, and information on local and provincial debates.

According to the website, mining supports jobs and families in communities across our province. BC has 21 major mines, over 30 industrial mineral producers, 2 smelters and over 350 exploration projects. There are also over 900 companies in BC that provide supplies and services to mining operations. In 2010 the BC mining industry supported over 37,000 well-paying direct and indirect jobs.

In 2011, mining provided $9.9 billion to the BC economy and $805 million in payments to government to support important social programs, including education and healthcare. BC mines also provide the minerals and metals we need for every-day life.

“The mining industry will continue to play a key role in the economy of BC into the coming years if government and industry work together to support a strong exploration, mining and mineral processing industry that is committed to safety and leadership in environmental stewardship”, says a release about the site. “The Vote Mining coalition urges all British Columbians to let their candidates know how important the mining sector is to our province before Election Day and “Vote Mining” on May 14.”