Citizens jury Megarock

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David Suzuki Foundation Worried About Woodland Caribou

The woodland caribou, an emblem of the boreal forest, has been threatened with extinction since 2002. The species is a barometer of forest health. If the caribou aren’t doing well, neither is the forest. The caribou need huge, interconnected expanses of healthy, intact forest to survive. If the woodland caribou are to survive, the government must establish protected areas in the boreal forest and limit industrial activities.

Boreal Forest Biological Institute Closing

"Editorial Although biologists and the general public alike are concerned about the condition of the boreal forest, the government has just cut funding to the main research institute devoted to the subject. The reason given was the need to limit public spending. Yet the forest is part of our rich natural resources; it has to be taken care of. Having scientists do research on the boreal forest is like having a doctor examine a patient: absolutely essential.

Letter to the editor —Resident of Former Mining Town Sounds Warning

"Dear friends of MineCity, I’d like to remind you how important it is to think ahead to what will happen to your small town when the mine closes. When the mine here closed, practically everyone was put out of work. And today we held a referendum on closing down our town. Whoever sells their house fastest wins! Think clearly and carefully, to be sure you have a bright future that doesn’t depend on a single source of jobs. The project should benefit us all for a long time to come! "

Letter to the editor —Angry About Mining Subsidies

I’ve just found out that the government will be investing $33 billion of our taxes to pay for the airport, roads and telecommunications systems needed for mining development. This generosity towards the mining companies makes me mad. Metal prices have been hitting record highs. Thanks to the government, they’ll set up here for free and get even richer, even though our natural resources are running out and our national debt is high.

Town Hall Debate Tonight: Roads or Trains?

MineCity residents are invited to the town hall at 6:30 p.m. for a debate on “Roads or Trains?” between the president and CEO of Megarock, the mayor of MineCity, the head of the residents’ committee and the local Band chief. Each one will speak for up to 10 minutes. Then questions will be taken from the audience. There will be a vote by secret ballot on the two proposals at 9 p.m. Come on out and express your views on a very important issue!

Dictionary—environmental impact assessment

Since the 1970s, developers of large projects have been required by law to carry out environmental impact assessments first. The assessment analyses and compares the impacts of the project on people, plants and animals, and the land , and describes ways to lessen any adverse effects. But the laws are not enough to eliminate overall environmental degradation, because environmental impact assessments are still often incomplete, poorly drafted or disregarded.

Water-Life Coalition Launches Media Campaign

Mining generates extremely polluted water, which is discharged into the nearest river or leaches into the groundwater, contaminating it for decades. That’s why protecting water must remain the company’s top priority, even if it means scaling down the mine. According to the Water-Life Coalition, “Adopting this basic ethical principle is the only way to ensure that mining dreams don’t become water nightmares.”

Major Grant for Geological Research

To stay competitive, but with a view to sustainable development, the mining industry must use innovative, economical methods to manage its waste. Our team of geologists will be researching integrated tailings management techniques that use a combination of cemented backfill and desulphurization to protect the environment and ensure worker safety.

Call for Tenders – MineCity Town Hall

To meet the anticipated needs of the Megarock project, MineCity is issuing a call for tenders to contractors to build a new recreational complex. It is to have four screening rooms, a versatile small theatre, a library and a multipurpose room. The work is to be completed two months before the mine opens. Tenders should include the use of sustainable, ecofriendly materials.

Wanted: Mining Engineer

Duties: Supervise mining on a daily basis; work with mining operations team on short- and long-term planning, budgeting and controlling ore quality; assess and decide on new technologies, equipment needed, etc.; optimize drilling and blasting; design and manage draining of quarry; manage truck dispatching system

Native Workers at Megarock Will Hunt

SCOOP: The Band Council has just reached an agreement with Megarock on time off for the traditional hunting season, harvests and spiritual ceremonies. More specifically, Native workers will be able to take 14-day vacations to go hunting in the forest with their families, in keeping with the rhythms of nature, as they have traditionally done. Let’s just hope the forests will still be home to their beloved caribou for a long time to come!

Native Healing Centre Presents Annual Report

The Healing Centre, set up to help villagers deal with their social issues, is pleased to present a very positive year-end report. With the help of the Training Centre, the Healing Centre staff assisted 16 Native youths with workplace training and jobs in the village and surroundings. These young people are proud of their new skills and are smiling again, because they won’t have to head off to the city next year. They’ve even decided to repay the Healing Centre by getting involved themselves.

Mining Act Reform Ahead

The reform will give towns and cities the right to ban mining. Residents will have to be informed as soon as a company obtains the right to explore the subsoil in their area. Any company that wants to open a mine has to post a bond equal to 100% of the anticipated costs of rehabilitating the land and providing legal assistance to affected homeowners. An environmental impact assessment has to be done for every single mining project, with no exceptions.

Restoring Mine Sites Using Biosolids

How can a site be effectively and sustainably be restored after a mine has closed down? Recent scientific research suggests reforesting the mine site and using local biosolids as fertilizer. Biosolids are nutrient-rich organic matter derived from wastewater treated in a purification plant. If the town, the mining company and the public coordinate their efforts, it’s a highly promising way of the future.

Megarock Opens MineCity Office

Megarock, the company planning to start up an open-pit iron mine in MineCity, does things on a grand scale. Tonight, it’s inaugurating its information office on Main Street. Residents and other interested parties are invited to come see the preliminary studies and plans, as well as the first environmental impact assessments available. At the same time, Megarock will also launch its Web site and answer questions from residents and journalists.

Citizens’ Committee Has Reason to Be Disappointed

"Editorial Although the residents’ committee had clearly expressed its demands with regard to the new neighbourhood that Megarock is proposing to build for resettled families, the plan is very disappointing. The chosen location is too far from downtown, the stores and the school. The houses will be small and close to the marsh. What’s the good of informing and consulting the public if you’re not going to listen to what they say? How can a rich company like this one pinch pennies when it comes to residents’ comfort and convenience? "