British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium

Managing soil and groundwater risks at mine sites : a British Columbia regulators overview Gladu, Jeremiah; Bianchin, Mario


This intent of this paper is to map out the regulatory process for managing soil and groundwater contamination during the operation and reclamation life stages of a mine in British Columbia. There are numerous Federal and Provincial acts and regulations, protocols, guidelines and codes, that set out legal requirements for environmental remediation, risk assessment and risk management at a mine site. There are also multiple regulatory authorities involved in managing environmental protection at mine sites in British Columbia including the British Columbia Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy and Fisheries and Oceans Canada. Depending on the life stage of the mine and the activities being permitted, there are differences in the environmental regulatory process between active mines, suspended operations and abandoned mines. This paper will provide an overview of the regulatory permit, authorization, reporting and notification requirements under the different scenarios that can be encountered when managing contaminated soil and groundwater at a mine site. The intent of this paper is not to provide a legal interpretation of the law related to environmental management at a mine sites, but rather to provide insight to the regulatory process for managing and remediating contamination at these sites.

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