Coal mine licences held by two companies in the Klappan region have been bought by the B.C. government in what it hopes is a temporary measure for planning purposes.

B.C. buys out coal licences in Tahltan territory

Fortune Minerals and POSCO Canada are being paid $18.3 million for anthracite coal rights, with a 10-year option to buy them back

The B.C. government is paying $18.3 million to buy out 61 coal mining licences in the Klappan region of northwestern B.C., to work with the Tahltan Nation on a management plan.

The government is calling the move a “permit deferral,” including a 10-year option for Fortune Minerals and Korea-based POSCO Canada to buy back the permits at the same price once an agreement on mining development is reached with the Tahltan.

Known internationally as the Sacred Headwaters, where the Nass, Skeena and Stikine Rivers arise, the region has been a focus of mining protest before. In 2012 the province bought back coalbed gas leases awarded to Shell Canada in 2004.

The anthracite coal mining licences have been purchased by BC Rail, which decades ago attempted to extend track to Dease Lake for mining development. The railway still has legislative authority to acquire coal mines and associated lands, and cash reserves to buy the Klappan licences.

Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett said the Tahltan, industry and the province all have an interest in agreeing on a development plan for the area, about midway between Stewart and Dease Lake.

Bennett said the companies remain interested in developing a large metallurgical coal mine on the property, and without the purchase announced Monday, the province could have ended up in court.

Northwest B.C. has multiple metal and coal mines on the drawing board, and the recent completion of a power line along Highway 37 has sparked development interest.

B.C. signed a shared decision-making agreement with the Tahltan Central Council in 2013, when the Tahltan administration was dealing with about 250 exploration applications a year over a territory about half the size of Washington state.

 

Just Posted

College buys a yurt to boost student success

Round tent-like structure part of college instructional shift

Soup kitchen sees “groundswell of community support”

Donations toward looming tax bill push non-profit back in the black

Terrace husband and wife honoured for saving each other’s lives

BC Ambulance presented each a Vital Link Award for separate incidents of CPR

Council supports lobby for fair share of cannabis tax revenue

The City of Terrace is throwing its support behind a West Kelowna… Continue reading

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

Airport registers modest passenger increase

Manager anticipates further growth in 2018 as expansion project nears completion

World’s fastest log car made in B.C. sells for $350,000 US

Cedar Rocket auctioned off three times at Barrett-Jackson Co., netting $350,000 US for veterans

Bad timing: Shutdown spoils Trump’s one-year festivities

Trump spends day trying to hash out a deal with Senate Minority Leader Chuck Schumer

RCMP nail sex toy thief

Shop owner plays a role in arrest

Ice-cream-eating bear draws controversy

An Alberta Wildlife Park posted a video this week of one of their bears going through a Dairy Queen drive-through

Fernie, RCMP go to court over city log books in fatal ammonia leak probe

Log books center stage in clashing of investigations between the city and RCMP

B.C.’s biggest pot plant planned for Oliver

Co-founder Tony Holler said the 700,000 sq. ft. facility would produce 100,000 kg of pot per year

High-end whisky seized in B.C. bar raids

Raids end in seizures at Victoria, Nanaimo and Vancouver whisky joints

Double-doubles and demonstrations: Employees rally outside Tim Hortons

Protests held in response to Ontario franchise owners cutting employee benefits and breaks

Most Read