Series GR-4046 - Mine development review process files

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Mine development review process files

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  • textual record
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  • Source of title proper: Title based on contents of series.

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  • 1974-1986 (Creation)

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2.3 m of textual records, maps and 3 photos

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Biographical history

In 1978 the mandate of the Ministry of Mines and Petroleum Resources was enlarged to include responsibility for energy matters from the disestablished Ministry of Energy, Transport and Communications. At this time, the ministry was renamed the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources (OIC 3018/78). Energy resources include natural gas and oil, coal, and electrical power. This 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.

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Scope and content

This series consists of mine development assessment process files for coal and metal mine projects from 1974-1986. The records relate to the review and approval of proposed mining projects in BC. They document the determination of legal conditions under which companies may build and operate major mines. This process was called the mine development review process. The records show the ways that different projects were treated and provide evidence of a company’s level of compliance with their agreed development conditions.

Some of the early records were created by the Environmental and Land Use Committee (ELUC) of Cabinet. After around 1979, the majority of records are created by either the Coal Guidelines Steering Committee (CGSC) or the Metal Mines Steering Committee (MMSC). These committees were primarily part of the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources, but worked with the ELUC and other ministries to approve projects.

Projects may be reviewed by the Ministry of Environment, Ministry of Agriculture, Ministry of Forests, Ministry of Lands, Ministry of Transportation and Highways, Ministry of the Provincial Secretary, Ministry of Municipal Affairs, Ministry of Labour, Ministry of Health and federal bodies such as Environment Canada.

Companies may have been required to conduct research and provide reports on potential impacts of the project in compliance with the guidelines for coal development or procedures for obtaining approval of metal mine development

The assessment process involved consideration of many factors in developing a mine. Potential issues include: water management; acid generation; fish and wildlife impacts; air pollution; air monitoring; waste management; geotechnical impacts; ground and surface water impacts; pollution control; permit acquisition; radioactivity assessment; reclamation plans; road construction; heritage impact assessments; public opinions; and socioeconomic impacts on nearby communities.

Records include correspondence, policy, procedures, meeting minutes, reports, maps, newspaper clippings, photos, reports and technical data. Many records are copies of originals which were provided to multiple committee members for reference.

The records are divided into several groups: Metal Mines Steering Committee files, coal files, southeast coal projects, northeast coal projects and Coal Guidelines Steering Committee records. Within these groupings, files are arranged alphabetically by the name of project.

The records are scheduled under one time schedule 880049.

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Transferred from the Environmental Assessment Office in 2001.


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Accession number(s): 88-1040

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