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

Nisga’a leader named UNBC chancellor

Dr. Joseph Arthur Gosnell is the first Indigenous leader to assume the role

Cache Creek council votes to rejoin local transit system

Details need to be worked out, but hopes are that change can be expedited

Ashcroft residents get information at Community Forum

Water treatment plant, recycling, an Eco-Depot, the budget, and more among items addressed

Elizabeth May’s wedding will be a ‘low-carbon affair’ in Victoria on Earth Day

Green party leader’s wedding party to depart in a cavalcade of electric cars

VIDEO: ‘Alarm bells’ raised by footage allegedly from B.C. pig farm, SPCA says

PETA released video Wednesday showing dead and injured piglets next to nursing piglets

Female real estate agents warned of suspicious man in Metro Vancouver

The man requests to see homes alone with the female agent, police say

Can you put your phone down for Mother’s Day?

#DiningMode campaign encourages people to leave the phone alone while eating

Horgan heckled as gas prices sit at record high, could go up more

Premier John Horgan blames refiners, not taxes

SPCA investigating after newborn kittens found in Vancouver dumpster

The kittens were found suffering from hypothermia and dehydration

Judge rejects hunter’s bid to get back a sheep shot in northern B.C.

Despite expert testimony, judgement says ram probably underage

‘B.C. cannot wait for action’: Top doctor urges province to decriminalize illicit drugs

Dr. Bonnie Henry says current approach in ‘war on drugs’ has criminalized and stigmatized drug users

“Oona River Poems” captures northwest B.C.’s landscapes

Canadian writer Peter Christensen releases his latest book, will tour the northwest later this year

Many teens don’t know they’re vaping nicotine, Health Canada finds

Canadian Tobacco, Alcohol and Drugs Survey finds youth unaware of nicotine product risk

Most Read