Series GR-3604 - Legal files relating to mining

Title and statement of responsibility area

Title proper

Legal files relating to mining

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  • textual record
  • electronic

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  • Source of title proper: Title based on the contents of the records.

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Series

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GR-3604

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Date(s)

  • [ca. 2000]-2014 (Creation)

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Physical description

6.38 m of textual records, 19 CD-ROMS, 1 DVD and 1 floppy disc

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Archival description area

Name of creator

(1998-2005)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources was established in 1899 under its first name, the Dept. of Mines, by the Department of Mines Act (SBC 1899, c. 48). Prior to that, the earliest regulation of mining in the province was implemented under the Gold Fields Proclamation of 1859 with the appointment of two gold commissioners by Governor James Douglas for the Colony of British Columbia. A gold commissioner was first appointed in 1864 for the Colony of Vancouver Island. The commissioners registered claims, issued licenses and adjudicated disputes with the advice and aid of elected district mining boards. The establishment of a provincial government with British Columbia’s entry into Confederation ultimately led to a Minister of Mines Act (SBC 1874, c. 16) in 1874. The Provincial Secretary also served as the Minister of Mines. In 1895, the Bureau of Mines Act 1895 (SBC 1895, c. 3) brought together all government offices connected with the mining industry. A provincial mineralogist was appointed who reported to the Provincial Secretary and Minister of Mines. In 1899, the Department of Mines Act created a separate department and minister. The Bureau of Mines remained in place as the technical division of the department and was also responsible for the certification for assayists. Revisions to the Department of Mines Act in 1934 and 1937 abolished the bureau and completely reorganized and centralized the department, dividing the functions into four branches: Administration Branch under the chief gold commissioner; Assay Branch under the chief analyst and assayer; Mineralogical Branch under the chief mining engineer; and Mines Inspection Branch under the chief inspector of mines. The department had responsibility for all matters affecting mining, including the collection, publication and circulation of information relating to mining, administration of all mining laws, and the operation and maintenance of the Provincial Assay Office, laboratories, sampling plants, and the maintenance of the Museum of Minerals. The functions and responsibilities of the department remained relatively stable until 1953 when responsibility for administration of the Petroleum and Natural Gas Act and the Coal Act was transferred from the Department of Lands and Forests. A Petroleum and Natural Gas Branch, headed by the Chief Petroleum Engineer, was established and the department was renamed the Department of Mines and Petroleum Resources in 1960 (SBC 1960, c. 107). In 1976, it was renamed the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum Resources (OIC 3199/76). The mandate of the ministry was enlarged again in 1978 to include responsibility for energy matters from the disestablished Ministry of Energy, Transport and Communications. Energy resources include natural gas and oil, coal, and electrical power. The ministry was renamed the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources (OIC 3018/78). The ministry was disestablished in 1996 as part of a government-wide reorganization (OIC 197/96). Its duties, powers and functions, other than those related to the Utilities Commission, were transferred to the newly established Ministry of Employment and Investment.

Name of creator

(2005-2010)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources was established in 2005 as the successor to the Ministry of Energy and Mines (OIC 450/2005).

The ministry was mandated with the responsibility for managing the development of the energy, mining and petroleum resource sectors in British Columbia. The ministry carries out many functions in this area. Ministry responsibilities in the mining sector include releasing permits, conducting inspections, and providing skills training and educational programs. Ministry responsibilities in the area of energy include iniatives to promote new energy technologies, energy conservation, regulatory policy in regard to electrical power generation and transmission. Ministry responsibilities in the area of oil and gas include promotion of the industry, development of royalty policy, and sale and auctioning of oil and gas rights.

In 2010, the ministry was succeeded by the Ministry of Energy and the Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands (OIC 652/2010).

Name of creator

(2010-2011)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands was established in October 2010 (OIC 652/2010). It was the successor of the Ministry of Forests and Range and the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources. The ministry was responsible for the functions originally performed by the prior ministries including managing the development of the forestry and mining resource sectors in British Columbia.

The ministry was dissolved in March 2011 and replaced by the Ministry of Energy and Mines and the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resources Operations (OIC 62/2011).

Name of creator

(2011-2012)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Energy and Mines was established in March 2011 as the successor to both the Ministry of Energy and the mining portfolio of the Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands (OIC 62/2011).

The ministry was responsible for managing the development of the energy, mining and petroleum resource sectors in British Columbia. Ministry responsibilities in the mining sector include releasing permits, conducting inspections, and providing skills training and educational programs. Ministry responsibilities in the area of energy include iniatives to promote new energy technologies, energy conservation, regulatory policy in regard to electrical power generation and transmission. Ministry responsibilities in the area of oil and gas include promotion of the industry, development of royalty policy, and sale and auctioning of oil and gas rights.

The ministry was renamed as the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas in September 2012 (OIC 594/2012)

Name of creator

(2012-2013)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas was established in 2012 following the change of name of the Ministry of Energy and Mines (OIC 594/2012). The new name reflected an increased importance to the management of natural gas resources.

The ministry was mandated with the responsibility for managing the development of the energy, mining and petroleum resource sectors in British Columbia. Ministry responsibilities in the mining sector include releasing permits, conducting inspections, and providing skills training and educational programs. Ministry responsibilities in the area of energy include iniatives to promote new energy technologies, energy conservation, regulatory policy in regard to electrical power generation and transmission. Ministry responsibilities in the area of oil and gas include promotion of the industry, development of royalty policy, and sale and auctioning of oil and gas rights.

The ministry was renamed as the Ministry of Energy and Mines in June 2013 (OIC 233/2013).

Name of creator

(2013-2017)

Biographical history

The Ministry of Energy and Mines was established in 2013 when the name of the former Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas was changed (OIC 233/2013).

The ministry was mandated with the responsibility for managing the development of the energy, mining and petroleum resource sectors in British Columbia. Ministry responsibilities in the mining sector include releasing permits, conducting inspections, and providing skills training and educational programs. Ministry responsibilities in the area of energy include iniatives to promote new energy technologies, energy conservation, regulatory policy in regard to electrical power generation and transmission. Ministry responsibilities in the area of oil and gas include promotion of the industry, development of royalty policy, and sale and auctioning of oil and gas rights.

The ministry was renamed in July 2017 as the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources (OIC 213/2017).

Custodial history

Scope and content

Series consists of legal issue files created by the Ministry of Energy and Mines. The majority of the files document the creation or revision and administration of legislation and regulations,

The majority of the files consist of legal opinions, reports, background research, notes, draft documents, copies of existing legislation and regulations from BC and other jurisdictions, committee minutes, briefing notes to ministers and ministry staff, and cabinet submissions. The legal opinions provide advice for administering current legislation and creating new legislation. The research files include photocopies of records dating back to 1873.

The 19 CD-ROMS and DVD contain copies of research notes, most of which has been printed and placed in the files.

The records are arranged numerically by file number.

The records were classified as 140-03 (Legislation, Ministry or Agency – Legislative Program) in the BC Government’s Administrative Classification Schedule.

The following ministries were responsible for creating these records:
2000-2005 British Columbia. Ministry of Energy and Mines
2005-2010 British Columbia. Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources
2010-2011 British Columbia. Ministry of Forests, Mines and Lands
2011-2012 British Columbia. Ministry of Energy and Mines
2012-2013 British Columbia. Ministry of Energy, Mines and Natural Gas
2013-2014 British Columbia. Ministry of Energy and Mines

Notes area

Physical condition

Immediate source of acquisition

Transferred by Corporate Initiatives Branch of the Ministry of Energy and Mines in 2016.

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Availability of other formats

Restrictions on access

Records are restricted. Please contact the BC Archives for access information.

Terms governing use, reproduction, and publication

Finding aids

A file list is held by the BC Archives Information and Privacy unit.

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General note

Accession: 96-8711

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