There has been a discussion about the future of mining in British Columbia in recent weeks. BC has a long tradition of mining and smelting. Currently, investors from Canada, the US, and other countries are trying to boost the industry and support its health and development by pumping considerable sums of money into major modernization, but they do not limit investments to reconstruction works. Four new mines are already under construction and will soon be able to commence production. They will be equipped with the newest technologies to improve effectiveness so that they will be able to keep up with market demand for minerals.
The investments are likely to benefit the region considerably since they will create thousands of jobs and business opportunities for citizens of Western Canada.
Over the past few years, the mining process in BC has operated in accordance with the highest environmental regulations, keeping up with the green image the province tries to maintain. It is considered the safest industry in the region. Greenhouse gas management, health and safety, tailings management, and aboriginal community management are only some of the planned campaigns that the TSM (Towards Sustainable Mining) initiative, together with the Mining Association of Canada, has developed to improve the industry’s policies.
TSM approaches relations with first nations very responsibly. Pierre Gratton, the president and CEO of the Mining Association of British Columbia, commented on the development: “The strong aboriginal focus of TSM indicates how far the industry has come in embracing first nations partnerships. Fifteen years ago, there were fewer than 20 agreements between mining companies and aboriginal communities in Canada. Today, there are almost 200, and many more are being negotiated.” Hopefully, this cautious approach will continue.