Protecting Water

Feature

Because lakes and rivers are fish habitat, they are protected by the Fisheries Act. This Act is Canada’s oldest environmental legislation and prohibits the release of “deleterious substances” into fish-bearing waters and the alteration or destruction of fish habitat. However, in 2002, Schedule 2 was added to the Metal Mining Effluent Regulation (Schedule 1 lists the regulation's "Authorized Officers"). Schedule 2 essentially allows for re-classifying any natural water body that gets listed on it as a “tailings impoundment area.” Once a lake or river gets listed, it is no longer considered a natural water body and no longer protected by the Fisheries Act. A mining company can use then it as a dumping ground for millions of tonnes of tailings and waste rock.

Latest News

Monday, April 7, 2014

Press Release: Colombia’s Ministry of Environment announced the delimitation of the Santurbán Páramo, a high-altitude wetland ecosystem that supplies water to millions of people in the country. While the ministry disclosed some aspects of the measure to the media, it has not released full details. These include the full extension of the demarcation, exact coordinates and which mining operations are inside or outside of the defined area.

Thursday, February 27, 2014

Yesterday’s federal decision to reject the New Prosperity Gold-Copper mine proposal was welcomed by Tŝilhqot’in Chiefs, AFN National Chief A-in-chut Shawn Atleo, Union of BC Indian Chiefs President, Grand Chief Stewart Phillip and First Nations everywhere. They now call on this to be the end of a costly, pointless battle that has dragged on since at least 1995, when Taseko Mines Ltd. was first told by the federal Department of Fisheries and Oceans not to waste any further time or money pursuing this unacceptable project.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

First Nations and non-governmental organizations (NGOs) are concerned that the Alberta Government and Sherritt International continue to downplay the effects of the release of 670-million litres of coal mine wastes into the Athabasca River watershed and that the federal government has remained silent on the spill.