The Mining Association of British Columbia

The Mining Association of British Columbia

September 29, 2009 07:00 ET

The Mining Association of British Columbia: Two Major Mining Projects Take Steps Forward

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - Sept. 29, 2009) - The Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) hailed key progress by two major B.C. mining projects, the Morrison copper gold project near Smithers and the Copper Mountain project outside Princeton.

"Two major BC mining projects took important steps forward this week," stated Pierre Gratton, President and CEO of MABC. "This is good news for British Columbia, particularly during the current economic downturn. These projects will create new jobs and economic opportunities in north central and southern British Columbia."

The B.C. mining sector currently contributes over $8 billion to the B.C. economy. The long term prognosis is for a robust B.C. mining sector, supported by demand for minerals and metals from emerging economies such as China and India. Over 20 B.C. mining projects are currently in the environmental review process. Around a half dozen of them are well-advanced and are planning to move to development in the next few years.

Pacific Booker Minerals Inc.'s Morrison project filed its application for an Environmental Assessment Certificate with the BC Environmental Assessment Office. This application, if accepted, will trigger a BC environmental review, a key step in the mine development process. The project proposes a 30,000 tonnes/day open pit mine over a projected mine life of 21 years. Pacific Booker Minerals Inc. plans to commence operations in 2012.

The Copper Mountain project received approval from the BC Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources to proceed with new mill foundation construction that enables the company to start building what should be BC's next major copper mine. Final mine permit amendments are expected in the near future. The $70 million mill foundation construction work is expected to create at least 90 full time jobs this fall and is to be conducted by BC-based Gisborne Group, a multi-disciplined industrial construction company. Copper Mountain plans to start production by mid-2011.

"The Gisborne Group is pleased to see a resurgence in the mining sector and trust this will be the beginning of long term growth and stability for all British Columbians," added Rae Clarkson, President of the Gisborne Group. "As a BC company with over fifty years experience in industrial construction, we are pleased to have been selected as the contractor for the Copper Mountain project. This work helps create and protect existing jobs at a time when BC needs them."

The MABC is regarded as the predominant voice of BC's mining industry representing the collective needs and interests of operating coal, metal and industrial mineral mining companies.

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