BC’s Auditor General has released her report on the mining sector.
In summing up, Carol Bellringer says “We found almost every one of our expectations for a robust compliance and enforcement program within the Ministry of Energy and Mines, and the Ministry of Environment were NOT met.”
In 2014, When the tailings pond at the Mount Polley mine breached, 25 million cubic metres of waste gushed into nearby waterways.
Bellringer says it may be many years before the financial, environmental and social implications are fully known.
Bellringer goes on to say she found those ministries are not informing the public and the government about the long-term risks from mining, nor the effectiveness of the agencies’ regulatory oversight, as well as the overall performance of the companies being regulated.
Province accepts most reccomendations
B.C.’s minister of mines and energy says he agrees with all the recommendations released today by the Auditor General, except for one he doesn’t agree with.
The auditor general says compliance and enforcement is lacking in B.C.’s mining sector.
But Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett says he’s not agreeing with all of the recommendations saying they create extra liability for the government and are not fair to the public service.
“But I think the auditor general’s office did a very good job on the performance audit, and we are accepting all of their recommendations with a caveat on one of them.”
That being the Government will not push the Ministry of Energy and Mines’ compliance and enforcement programs into a separate ministry or agency.
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