For Immediate Release
June 18, 2021
Audit report affirms BC regulations for mine tailing’s safety among best in the world
VANCOUVER, BC – An audit report released today by British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines affirms British Columbians can be confident in the safety of the province’s mine tailings storage facilities (TSFs), according to the Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC).
The audit confirmed that the revisions made to the Health, Safety and Reclamation Code for Mines in British Columbia (code) in 2016 have had a positive effect on the management and operations of TSFs in BC. The audit found that BC’s regulatory framework governing TSFs is aligned with established industry best practices and is among the best in the world.
“The audit affirms BC regulations governing mine tailings storage facilities have been improved, are among the best in the world, and have a high level of industry compliance,” said Michael Goehring, President and CEO of MABC. “British Columbians can be confident in the safety of our province’s mine tailings storage facilities.”
The 2016 revisions to the code were made by a committee comprised of government, Indigenous, labour and industry representatives following the breach of the Mount Polley TSF in August 2014. Government, with the support of industry, has made additional improvements to modernize and strengthen BC’s mining regulations, which are some of the highest mining standards globally for environmental protection, health and safety, reclamation and closure.
The audit, the first to be completed by the chief auditor of mines, made seven recommendations to guide further improvements to BC’s regulatory framework for TSFs. The Ministry of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation has accepted the Chief Auditor’s recommendations and has initiated an implementation plan.
“We welcome the chief auditor’s recommendations, which will further increase clarity, consistency and best practices in the code and regulatory framework for TSFs,” said Goehring. “Protecting the health and safety of workers, local and indigenous communities and the environment through responsible mining and TSF management is our industry’s highest priority.”
About the Mining Association of British Columbia:
MABC is the voice of the British Columbia’s steelmaking coal, metal and mineral producers, smelters, and advanced development companies. Our industry benefits all British Columbians and supports more than 35,000 jobs and over 3,700 small, medium, and Indigenous affiliated businesses in every corner of the province through an annual spend of nearly $3 billion on goods and services. Our members’ products have among the lowest carbon footprints globally and are helping the world transition to a cleaner, low-carbon future; safely, responsibly, and sustainably.
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