News And Updates About The Crown Mountain Coking Coal Project

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NWP COAL CANADA LTD RESOURCES

UDATES ABOUT MILESTONES

2021 Milestones

2022 Milestones

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

  • The majority of Project infrastructure would be in the West Alexander Creek drainage on the toe of Erikson ridge and extending to the top of Crown Mountain:
    • East Pit, North Pit, and South Pit all sit on the west shoulder of Crown Mountain
      • Portions of all East and South pit extend across the ridge line into the Main Alexander Creek drainage
      • Portions of the North Pit extend across the divide into the Grave Creek drainage
    • The Processing Plant would be located to the north end of the Project site just to the south of the divide between Grave Creek drainage and West Alexander Creek drainage.
    • All mine rock storage would be located in pit or in a single bottom-up layer-cake mine rock storage facility in the base of the West Alexander Creek drainage starting directly south of the Processing Plant
    • All Processing Plant rejects and the dewatered tailings will be stored within the bottom-up layer-cake mine rock storage facility (note that this means the Project does not include a tailings storage pond)
    • The main settling pond would be located down stream of the mine rock storage facility near to the confluence of West Alexander Creek and the main Alexander Creek.
  • The remaining Project infrastructure would be in the Grave Creek drainage:
    • A clean coal conveyor would run from the Processing plant down to the Grave Creek Forestry Service Road
    • A clean coal transfer site would load coal from the conveyor into highway trucks to haul coal on the Grave Creek Forestry Service Road
    • Water management infrastructure for the coal transfer site
    • A water reservoir located near Grave Creek
    • A covered clean coal storage structure by the rail load out next to the existing rail line
    • A rail load out, including conveyor and hopper next to the existing rail line
    • Service roads and utility corridors
  • NWP is committed to sharing the area with other land-uses including Indigenous traditional use, trapping, hunting, and recreation.
  • Some Project areas would need to be closed to public access for the duration of the Project. NWP intends to keep this area as small as is practicable. NWP will work with Indigenous peoples, government agencies, and stakeholders to determine a safe but workable boundary. For example, access to Erickson Ridge (to the west of the Project) might be altered but would not need to be restricted.
  • Some areas would need to be temporarily closed to public access during blasting. NWP will work with Indigenous peoples, government agencies, and stakeholders to determine processes to keep other land users safe during blasting with as little access restriction as possible. NWP’s team has experience managing blasting within an active snowmobiling area while ensuring everyone’s safety.
  • The Project’s plan is to share the Grave Creek Road with other users. While the road would be widened in places to 12 m, some sections would stay at the current width and could only handle one way traffic. For safety, all road users would need to follow BC Resource Road Radio Communications procedures.
  • Efforts to minimize impacts to stream flows include:
    • The Project would generate dewatered tailings so that process water would be recovered rather than being deposited with tailings
    • The Project’s primary source of processing water will be industrial runoff
    • The Project’s backup source of processing water will be from an off channel reservoir next to Grave Creek. This type of reservoir allows water to be withdrawn from the creek during peak flows and avoid taking water during low flow conditions.
    • Having the two sources of water would allow the Project to balance water withdrawals across the two drainage systems to reduce impacts during low flow conditions
  • Efforts to minimize impacts to water quality include:
    • Source control to keep chemicals leaching out of the mine rock that is moved to access the coal:
      • Mine rock would be stored in-pit as much as practicable
      • All other mine rock would be stored in a bottom-up layer-cake style facility designed for source control
      • The dewatered tailings and plant rejects would be used as part of source control within the mine rock storage facility
    • Settling ponds to remove sediment from runoff at the processing plant, mine pits and mine rock storage area (Alexander Creek drainage):
      • A main settling pond would be constructed down stream of the mine site. It would be the final point of capture, release, and compliance
      • Interim ponds would be constructed to capture specific areas and pre-treat water before it reports to the main settling pond
    • Runoff management at the Rail Load Out (within the Elk River valley) would include:
      • The clean coal would be stored in a covered structure virtually eliminating the potential of coal impacted runoff from that site.
      • Drainage from the RLO will be directed to a permeable pond
  • Runoff management would also occur at the explosive storage area and clean coal transfer site in the Grave Creek drainage.
  • The Project’s source control plan would produce water quality (and selenium levels) at or below the levels produced by active water treatment plants operating in the Elk Valley. These efforts would focus on keeping chemicals from leaching out of the mine rock that is moved to access the coal:
    • Mine rock would be stored in-pit as much as practicable
    • All other mine rock would be stored in a bottom-up layer-cake style facility designed for source control
    • The dewatered tailings and plant rejects would be used as part of source control within the mine rock storage facility
  • Wherever practicable, Project plans have considered reducing new disturbance to minimize impact to wildlife, habitat, and migration corridors
  • The environmental assessment process through both BC and Canada require assessment of impacts and mitigations to wildlife, habitat, and migration corridors.
  • Detailed mitigations, such as speed limits, crossing structures, or offsets will be discussed through the environmental assessment process and further defined during the permitting process.
  • For the environmental assessment, NWP has modelled wildlife occurrence using advanced models that look at many factors rather than using simplistic (and occasionally problematic) that only look at habitat suitability. NWP’s models also look broadly enough to understand wildlife movement across the BC/Alberta border.
  • NWP is participating in regional initiatives as part of the Elk Valley Cumulative Effects Management Framework.
  • Due to the Project location and layout, it will have no direct impact to high elevation grassland ecosystems or Bighorn Sheep winter range.
  • Monitoring plans are developed though the regulatory process to account for:
    • Existing conditions
    • Potential impacts
    • Mitigation
    • Input from regulators, Indigenous peoples, and stakeholders
  • Often monitoring plans are tied to specific permits (e.g., Mines Act, Environment Management Act, Fisheries Act).
  • Draft plans would be shared through the process and final plans will be available once all permits are approved.
  • Reclamation has been integrated into the Project design:
    • Mine pits would be partially back-filled with mine rock and have reclaimable headwalls – steep but not vertical
    • Tailings would be integrated into the mine rock storage facility. The Project does not include a hard to reclaim tailings pond or stand-alone facility to close and reclaim
    • Bottom-up layer-cake mine rock storage creates a stable reclaimable landform that cleans its own water – the Project would not need long term active treatment or pumping in and out of a Saturated Rock Fill
    • Progressive reclamation – once mine rock placement in East pit and North pit is complete, reclamation can start while mining is still ongoing in South pit.
  • NWP is committed to sharing the area with other land-uses including Indigenous traditional use, trapping, hunting, and recreation.
  • NPW’s access plan will not restrict access to Grave Lake, the campground, or the private cabins.
  • The Project’s load out would be located just over 2 km from the Grave Lake Campground (further than Teck’s Line Creek Processing Plant and associated facilities). The load out would include:
    • a covered clean coal stock pile to reduce dust and water quality impacts
    • a loading silo over a railway track to load 2 to 3 trains per week
    • a conveyor to move clean coal from the stockpile to the silo
  • The load out would be in an area that has previous disturbance. It has been laid out to reduce new disturbance and to avoid archeological/cultural sites.
  • Detailed mitigations, such as speed limits, noise attenuation berms, or other dust/traffic management efforts will be discussed through the environmental assessment process and further defined during the permitting process.
  • There are legally protected Conservation Lands in the Project area that are managed by the BC Government on behalf of The Nature Trust of British Columbia. This consists of the Big Ranch/Grave Prairie Conservation Complex (Rankin/ Musil/ Big Ranch). The Project utility corridor would cross these Conservation Lands. There are no other Project facilities proposed for legally protected Conservation Lands.
  • In 2013 Teck purchased lands in the Project area and in 2020 Teck and the KNC entered into an agreement to manage those lands for conservation purposes. NWP began exploring and making plans for the Crown Mountain Coking Coal Project prior to Teck purchasing those lands. NWP has consulted with Teck and the KNC about the Project’s use of a portion of those lands for the Project’s rail load-out (which would be in a previously disturbed area). To date, no agreement has been reached.
  • NWP supports the concept of Conservation Lands and will work with the BC government and the KNC to evaluate the purchase of additional Conservation Lands.
  • NWP is committed to hiring from local communities so that, as much as possible, workers are staying in their own residences rather than creating new housing pressure.
  • NWP will engage with Indigenous peoples, local Municipalities, and local Chamber of Commerce to develop strategies that align with existing programs related to local workforce, local suppliers, and housing pressure.
  • NWP’s current regulatory schedule anticipates beginning construction in late 2022, after obtaining all required permits and approvals. We will begin developing our staffing and procurement process earlier that year with the bulk of our hiring occurring in 2023.

ONGOING NWP ENGAGEMENT

Ongoing discussions with Indigenous people including:

  • Connection with the regulatory process
  • Relationship building
    Site tours
  • Information gathering and sharing
  • NWP presentations to group meetings
  • General and targeted surveys
  • Responding to questions and requests for information
  • Information about pending engagement events
  • Information about pending milestones
  • Updates after key milestones