Western Candian Coal officials along with representatives from the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office were on hand Thursday night to pass along information updates surrounding the proposed Brule Mine Project.
Although the crowd was smaller for this open house than previous Western Canadian Coal open houses, the general feeling was very positive. With the Wolverine Mine construction set to begin in April 2005, there was an air of expectation and excitement among many residents.
Currently the Brule Project is in the beginning stages. Once the environmental assessment review process begins things will move along. Bob Hart of the BC Environmental Assessment Office explained the environmental assessment review process, which needs to take place before this project can proceed. This review lasts a maximum of 180 days. This review starts with a Public Comment period, which begins and then lasts for 75 days. During this time Government agencies, First Nations and the public are given the opportunity to review and comment on the application. When this is complete Western Canadian Coal will be given the opportunity to address any issues identified by these groups. Next, the findings are documented and this report is referred to three ministers for decision. The Minister?s Decision can take up to 45 days. If and when this is approved Western Canadian Coal can obtain necessary permits.
?We are delighted to see the community looking forward to the mine opening and the possibility that it will open early.? Says Kathy Pomeroy, Vice President Environmental and Regulatory for Western Canadian Coal.
It is currently expected that there will be up to of 260 full time jobs in operations. There will also be related jobs in the rail and port industries.