Teck releases Elk Valley water quality reports

Teck has released the results of water quality research and monitoring in the Elk Valley.

Teck has revealed mining contaminants leaching from its operations in the Elk Valley could be impacting a species of aquatic insect.

However, fish populations are not under threat from current concentrations of selenium and other mining-related substances in local waterways, according to a press release issued by the company Monday evening.

Teck has released the findings of water quality research and monitoring that has been ongoing in the Elk Valley since 2014.

It has also committed to making future reports available on its website.

“Overall, the report findings confirm that the targets for selenium and other substances established in the Elk Valley Water Quality Plan are appropriate and protective of aquatic life,” read the release.

“They also indicate that while concentrations of selenium and other substances are generally trending as expected, they are not affecting fish populations.

“Effects on the percentage of some types of benthic invertebrates (certain types of mayflies) have been observed in specific downstream areas and further study work is being undertaken to determine the cause.”

Teck spends between $15-18 million a year on water quality and aquatic health studies and monitoring, the results of which are shared with regulators and the Ktunaxa Nation Council.

By making this information more broadly available, the company says it hopes to advance community knowledge and understanding, and accelerate the pace of scientific progress and innovation in this area.

“Water quality is very important to communities, indigenous groups, and the more than 4000 Teck employees in the Elk Valley,” said Marcia Smith, Senior Vice President, Sustainability and External Affairs.

“A lot of work continues to go into understanding water quality and aquatic health in the Elk River watershed, and we are pleased to share our data.

“We believe these reports will help people see the efforts underway to better understand and manage water quality in the area.”

The reports were prepared by professional scientists and represent the knowledge developed since 2014 when the Elk Valley Water Quality Plan was approved.

They have been reviewed by the Environmental Monitoring Committee, a group that provides science-based and Ktunaxa Traditional Knowledge advice and input to Teck and the B.C. Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy regarding monitoring designs and reports in the Elk Valley.

Ktunaxa Nation Council Chair Kathryn Teneese applauded the move to provide public access to water quality reports.

“There have been significant impacts to water in Qukin ʔamaʔkis (Elk Valley) due to coal mining, and transparency and a shared understanding of the current situation across Indigenous, provincial, federal and state governments is important,” she said.

“The value and significance of water to the Ktunaxa Nation and in Qukin ʔamaʔkis cannot be understated, and a shared understanding allows for meaningful discussions on next steps to address impacts to water.”

Living Lakes Canada Executive Director Kat Hartwig also welcomed the announcement.

“Transparency from all sectors, including industry, is essential for more effective collaboration amongst First Nations and non-First Nations government, academia and community groups in order to address water quality and quantity challenges which are only intensifying with climate change,” she said.

“This good first step will eventually align with the open source Water Data Hub currently being discussed for the Columbia Basin.”

Electronic copies of the reports can be found at Teck.com/elkvalley.

Just Posted

Good fencing makes good neighbours— especially when your neighbours are bears

Workshop in Pass Creek this weekend to promote benefits of proper protection for livestock

Kootenay region posts 10-per-cent return rate on electoral reform ballots

As of Nov. 13, only 5.3 per cent of ballots had been returned province-wide

Nakusp Secondary School hosts day of remembrance

Event honoured Indigenous contributions to Canada’s war efforts

Remembering a century at the Nakusp Cenotaph

Nakusp joined the rest of Canada in honouring 100 years since the end of the First World War

B.C. Legions in need of young members to continue aiding veterans into the future

Lest we forget what thousands of men and women did to fight for Canada’s freedoms – but without new membership, many Legion chapters face dwindling numbers

Fashion Fridays: 5 coats you need this winter!

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

California wildfire death toll hits 63

Sheriff says hundreds still missing in nation’s deadliest wildfire

Harsh storms have nearly tripled power outages in last five years, BC Hydro says

More frequent and severe storms have damaged Hydro’s electrical systems since 2013

Trudeau to meet key Pacific trade partners at APEC leaders’ summit

Canada became one of the first six countries to ratify the CPTPP

Judge orders White House to return press pass to CNN’s Acosta

U.S. District Court Judge will decide on White House press credentials of CNN reporter Jim Acosta

WikiLeaks chief could see charges, US court filing suggests

Charges against Julian Assange could help illuminate the question of whether Russia co-ordinated with the Trump campaign

Federal MPs denounce controversial Facebook post targeting Sajjan

Okanagan Conservatives apologize for controversial Facebook post

Canada has enough pipelines to get the moon

Pipelines totalling 840,000 kilometres run across Canada

Migrants streaming into Tijuana, but now face long stay

U.S. border inspectors are processing about 100 asylum claims a day at the main border crossing with San Diego

Most Read