The BC TRCR Committee is pleased to announce that the action-packed virtual September 22 and 23, 2021 event was a great success. A press release: 2021 TRCR News Release was sent out to media, announcing the winners of the best Paper Award from 2020, student scholarships and of course, the Mine Reclamation Awards.

Centerra Gold and Chu Cho Environmental are the co-recipients of the Jake McDonald Annual Reclamation Award for their ongoing research into innovative techniques to solve reclamation questions at the Mount Milligan Mine, and their partnership with local communities. Mount Milligan’s environmental team, which includes Indigenous members from Nak’azdli Whut’en First Nation and McLeod Lake Indian Band, co-hosted tours of Centerra Gold’s Endako and Kemess sites for local Indigenous Nations to identify successful reclamation methods from these “living labs” to evaluate their application at the Mount Milligan Mine. The experiences and lessons learned during the reclamation of the Kemess and Endako mines were leveraged into the development and implementation of a Proof-of-Concept reclamation demonstration field trial. “Although the COVID-19 pandemic has been challenging for collaboration across communities, the Mount Milligan environmental team successfully brought together people from Indigenous Nations into the closure planning process, and used examples of exemplary reclamation to apply what was learned to guide site specific reclamation approaches at Mount Milligan,” says Tim Antill, awards subcommittee chair and incoming TRCR chair. Centerra Gold previously received the Jake McDonald Annual Reclamation Award for Mount Milligan at the 2016 symposium.

These photos depict the work that was accomplished by Centerra Gold and Chu Cho Environmental.

Rough and Loose – proof of concept tailings dam reclamation technique

Kemess, view from top of Tailings Storage Facility

Reclamation research

The Tony Milligan Book Award was presented to Trevor Baker, Justin Straker and Max Ryan of Integral Ecology Group for the best paper delivered at the previous year’s BC Mine Reclamation Symposium, the first symposium held online. The paper, “Development of a soil water balance-based model for predicting ecosystem occurrence on post closure landforms” describes a system for more accurately predicting the soil moisture regime of reclaimed upland sites.

Papers from this 2021 Symposium are now available at UBC’s eCIRCLE on the Publications page. We would like to thank our TRCR Papers chair, Lauchlan Fraser of Thompson Rivers University (TRU) and his 2021 paper review subcommittee of Jaimie Dickson, Landon Benson, Steve O’Hara, Mike Rutherford and Anayansi Cohen-Fernandez.

The TRCR is also pleased to announce its 2021 Jake McDonald Memorial Scholarship recipient. Jaxon Reid of Kamloops, BC, is a second-year mining engineering student at BCIT who has previously completed 3 years as a biology major in the Bachelor of Science program at University of Victoria. Jaxon switched to mine engineering last year after working in a metallurgical lab and becoming more focused on a career in mining.

The 44th Annual Mine Reclamation Symposium attracted more than 240 delegates ranging from biologists to engineers and geoscientists and representatives from Indigenous communities from throughout western Canada. “We have built on the strong success of our first ever virtual event last year, and are pleased to provide two full days of exciting virtual content (including multiple virtual mine tours) that covers a diverse range of topics plus an additional interactive shortcourse this year,” notes Alison Burton, outgoing chair of the TRCR.

Congratulations to all the Winners.

An inventive trivial pursuit session just after lunch on September 23rd was hosted by Tree Time Services with their inimitable host, Michael Cavers. This was truly a nice, humorous break from the session including trivia from 1970 to 1990’s music with 5 breakout groups competing.

Thanks so much to our conference facilitator Aevias for a well organized day.

Following the Symposium event, on September 29th and October 1st from 9 to 1 pm PST the short course on Mine Closure Planning presented by: Mike O’Kane of Okane Consultants took place. The 2021 Short course agenda is attached.

We will see you next year, if possible for the 45th Annual Mine Reclamation Conference.