British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium

Mining and archaeological resources : conflicts and mitigation procedures Simonsen, Bjorn O.


The options listed above provide the basis for the solutions to the problem of conflict between proposed mine development and heritage resources. There must, of course, be adequate funds allocated so that such options can be exercised; there must be adequate lead time provided; an adequate legislative base to ensure that the various options can be exercised; and a willingness on both the developer's and the resource manager's side to cooperate toward achieving these goals. In terms of reclamation, there are in fact some means by which the mine developer can provide for a legacy of heritage resources that might be physically destroyed by mining operations. These are, however, entirely contingent upon the procedures and options outlined above and may include one or more of the following: 1) A small museum facility, interpretive or a historic reconstruct ion centre can be provided in the area of the development to present displays relating to heritage resources and objects identified during the various assessment and mitigation stages. 2) Information boards and historic site markers can be erected to identify and interpret heritage values within the development area. 3) Published information in the form of pamphlets and books can be produced whose contents and impact would be much the same as an interpretive centre. 4) Archaeological and historic investigations in the development area during the assessment and mitigation stages quite often have a positive effect upon local residents. Such projects have often provided the impetus for the formation of historical societies in local areas. 5) The long-term potential for increased tourism to areas that have developed heritage resources in ways as described above, is excellent. Lastly, it should not be forgotten that all or any of the above actions or consequences of a well-planned program of heritage conservation can be of great value to a developer in terms of public relations and the image of the developer in the eyes of government and public.

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