No details yet on an independent investigation promised by the government into the Mount Polley tailings pond breach but the minister of Environment says we could hear something soon.
Mary Polak was asked if the province could have done more before the breach occurred.
“Well we don’t know the answer to that. That is the reason why an independent investigation is so important. People don’t trust the government to be investigating itself. That means that when it comes to looking at whether or not we need stricter regulations, greater number of inspections, better engineering, we don’t know the answer to those questions.”
Polak says details still need to be hammered out.
“We expect as well there should be an independent investigation. There are a number of different areas that we are solid on before we move forward. Part of that is making sure that we are working with First Nations around there involvement but I expect an announcement in the coming days hopefully next week.”
She says Imperial Metals has yet to meet a mandated Friday deadline.
“We are looking for a long term environmental impact assessment along with an implementation plan that they still need to submit to us.”
“And they still haven’t done that?”
“There deadline is the 15th. We are working with the company to ensure that they get that into us but at this stage if they miss a deadline then there are financial penalties.”
She says crews at the mine have about 40% of the work done on a dam to repair the breach.