The exciting restoration of the old Britannia mine on the Sea to Sky Highway between Vancouver and Whistler in British Columbia is recognized in this year’s list of awards winners announced today by the Prospectors and Developers Association of Canada (PDAC).
Following an extensive restoration of the Britannia mine, which in its heyday in the 1920s was the largest producer of copper in the British Commonwealth, the site at Britannia Beach is now home to the B.C. Museum of Mining.
During the mine’s operation, approximately 80 kilometres of underground workings and five open pits were excavated, the resulting acid rock drainage leaching out heavy metals directly into Howe Sound. A water treatment plant, operated by EPCOR and in partnership with the provincial government, now treats the water before it is discharged, clean, into the ocean. Funding for remediation of the mine was provided by five mining companies involved in the former operation of the mine.
“The mine is a piece of Canadian mining history and its restoration has created a showplace to talk about our industry,” said Edward Thompson, chair of the PDAC awards committee, which is responsible for reviewing award nominations.
Among the other winners, BioteQ Environmental Technologies Inc. is being recognized with the Environmental and Social Responsibility Award for excellence in environmental protection. BioteQ developed a technology and system that removes dissolved metals and sulphate from contaminated acid water, reducing the environmental liability associated with mine wastewater.
This year’s seven awards recipients will be honoured at a banquet on Monday, March 2, at the Fairmont Royal York Hotel in Toronto. The event, which is sponsored by Barrick Gold Corporation, is held during the PDAC’s International Convention, Trade Show and Investors Exchange to be held in the south building of the Metro Toronto Convention Centre from Sunday, March 1 to Wednesday, March 4.