The Clark government is spending 18 million dollars to forestall a controversial coal mining project in northwestern BC.
The deal sees the government paying 18.3 million dollars to Fortune Minerals and POSCO Canada to buy 61 coal licenses in the Klappan area-an area of cultural importance to the Tahltan First Nation.
The companies will have an option to buy back the licenses at the same price if an agreement can be reached with the Tahltan during that period.
The government says the company’s timeline for developing the coal project doesn’t mesh with ongoing negotiations with the Tahltan.
The money will come from cash reserves held by BC Rail, not the central government treasury.