CBC – Mount Polley mine disaster: 3 years later concerns still remain. Auditor general says improvements have been made but better separation needed between government and industry
Three years after the Mount Polley mine disaster, there are still concerns over the adequacy of regulation and oversight in the mining industry. In 2014, the mine’s tailings dam broke sending 24 million cubic metres of mining waste into nearby lakes and rivers.
An independent engineering panel identified overlooked glacial layers beneath the dam resulting in an unstable foundation, as the reason for the failure. B.C. Auditor General Carol Bellringer led a two-year investigation into the Mount Polley mining operation and the role of the Ministry of Environment and the Ministry of Energy and Mines. … Bellringer says the report’s key
…Jacinda Mack, the co-ordinator of First Nations Women Advocating Responsible Mining (FNWARM), was living close to the mine when the dam broke and has visited the site multiple times since then. She believes that the disaster indicates a lack of knowledge about mining risks.
“I think Mount Polley proved that the level of risk was beyond anything that anyone could understand,” said Mack. “There was a complete catastrophic failure which everyone said would not happen.”