BRITISH COLUMBIA – The BC Ministry of Energy and Mines and the BC Ministry of Environment have issued permit amendments that will allow Vancouver's Imperial Metals Corp. to restart operations at its Mount Polley gold-copper mine 100 km northeast of Williams Lake.
The permit allows for modified operations whereby the mill may treat up to 4 million tonnes of ore per year, approximately 50% of the plant's capacity. Ore will be supplied from the Cariboo pit and Boundary zone underground workings. Tailings will be stored in the Springer pit.
Imperial said in a release that amending the permits and allowing operations to resume at Mount Polley will allow the company to retain most of its skilled workforce. Nearby communities will also benefit as the mine plays a significant economic role in the region.
A breach of the Mount Polley tailings dam on Aug. 4, 2014, unleashed millions of litres of slurry and debris into Hazeltine Creek and Quesnel Lake. Cleanup costs were estimated at more than $67 million. The incident triggered two separate inquiries, and had other projects re-examining their tailings management plans.
Imperial's remediation efforts continue. Please visit ImperialMetals.com.