July 17, 2006

Elk Valley coal mining operations honoured for reclamation work

Elk Valley Coal Partnership's Fording River and Elkview mining operations, both in southeastern British Columbia, were honoured for their reclamation activities award at the 30th Annual British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium, held late last month in Smithers, BC.

The Fording River operation received the 2005 British Columbia Jake McDonald Mine Reclamation Award for outstanding reclamation achievements. This marks the third time in its operating history that the Fording River mine has received this award. The mine was previously recognized in 1979 and 1992.

"Reclamation has been an integral part of the mining process at Fording River since mining began in the 1970s," said John Pumphrey, environmental officer at Fording River. "Significant time and resources have been invested into reclamation programs and in keeping with our practice for environmental sustainability, reclamation will continue to play an important role in the future," he added.

Fording River, Canada's largest producer of metallurgical coal, began its reclamation research in 1969, and has become a leader in mine reclamation, contributing significantly to the current state of reclamation knowledge in the province.

The Elkview operation was the recipient of the 2005 Citation for outstanding achievement for reclamation at a coal mine. Dave Ryder, senior environmental co-ordinator at Elkview, noted that "Elkview has been a leader in the development of reclamation solutions for more than 30 years. In addition to the reclamation of newer disturbance, Elkview has done an excellent job of reclaiming historical mining disturbances."

Recent wildlife surveys indicate the largest recorded populations of elk and mule deer on the Elkview property in more than 20 years.

Elk Valley Coal is owned by a partnership between Fording Canadian Coal Trust and Teck Cominco. More information is available from John Pumphrey at Fording River, 250/865-5183, or Dave Ryder at Elkview, 250/425-8772.

The awards were presented by the Symposium convenor, the Technical and Research Committee on Reclamation (TRCR), a government-industry group established in the early 1970s to promote communication between the two sectors in the area of environmental protection and reclamation associated with mining. The TRCR has been sponsoring the annual British Columbia Mine Reclamation Symposium since 1977 to foster the exchange of information and ideas on reclamation. More information is available on the TRCR Web site, www.trcr.bc.ca/index.htm.

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