GeoscienceBC refines geological survey information to find potential mineral deposits. The aerial magnetic surveys have begun searching for underground aquifers.

Mineral survey expands to gas industry

Encouraged by mineral finds, the B.C. government is extending aerial geological surveys to search for water in B.C.'s natural gas patch

Encouraged by its success in finding mineral deposits, the B.C. government is extending aerial geological surveys to search for water in the natural gas region of B.C.

Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett announced a $3 million extension of provincial funding for non-profit research organization GeoscienceBC at the Minerals North conference in Vanderhoof last week. The economy of the small community west of Prince George is historically based on farming and forest products, but one of B.C.’s largest gold mines is in development near there.

Bennett said New Gold’s Blackwater mine project, 110 km southwest of Vanderhoof, is a direct result of the GeoscienceBC survey that started in 2005 and identified the region as having metal mine potential. New Gold is continuing drilling this summer and proceeding with environmental assessment, planning to start construction once the price of gold recovers sufficiently to support the project.

New Gold expects the mine to generate 1,200 construction jobs and 500 operations jobs.

GeoscienceBC extended its survey last year to search for water aquifers around the major shale gas developments in the northeast. Deep salt-water aquifers can be used as sources of water for hydraulic fracturing and for disposal of contaminated water that comes up with gas.

The survey can also detect shallow fresh water aquifers, so they can be avoided in gas drilling and maintained for drinking and irrigation uses.

Bennett said the magnetic survey may also help understand the seismic effects of natural gas activities. Another application is searching for gravel deposits, which are used all over the province for road and other construction.

GeoscienceBC is the only public non-profit geological research organization in Canada. Its exploratory work narrows the search area for mineral exploration companies.

Bennett credited its work for locating a new metal ore deposit at the Huckleberry Mine south of Houston, extending its expected operation to 2021.

 

Just Posted

South Slocan woman killed in Friday crash

Police continue to investigate cause of fatal crash

Castlegar’s Stanley Humphries School’s got talent

Talent show to be held Feb. 21 at Brilliant Cultural Centre

What’s Up: Things to see and do on Family Day

There’s plenty of fun to be had across the West Kootenay this coming long weekend!

Province announces $23 million for upgrades at Kootenay Boundary Regional Hospital

West Kootenay-Boundary Regional Hospital District Board has yet to review the provincial proposal

Selkirk College Saints score pair of crucial wins

Stellar goaltending and timely goals lead to victory over the Vancouver Island University Mariners.

Mermen calendar targets ‘toxic masculinity,’ raises big money for charities

Newfoundland and Labrador Beard and Moustache Club gave a cheque for more than $202,000 to Violence Prevention NL

New trial ordered over banning whales, dolphins at Vancouver aquarium

Park board’s appeal reverses previous decision that found it had no right to implement a ban

Payless to close 248 Canadian stores, saying it’s ‘ill-equipped’ for market

The company will begin closing stores at the end of March

Make sure measles shots up to date, Public Health Agency says

Measles causes high fever, coughing, sneezing and a widespread painful rash

Ammonia leak shuts down curling club in Nelson

It’s not yet clear when the leak was detected

Super snow moon set to rise across B.C.

It is the biggest and brightest moon of the year

‘Our entire municipality is heartbroken’: Seven children die in Halifax house fire

A man and woman remained in hospital Tuesday afternoon, the man with life-threatening injuries

Social media influencers promote Kootenays

MountainGirls, The Lady Alliance founders stop in Fernie and Golden on RV tour

Minister says plans to fight poverty, climate change, focus of B.C. budget

The NDP said in its throne speech last week that affordability will be the hallmark of its initiatives

Most Read