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JULY 2015



Pacific NorthWest LNG and LNG Canada reach project milestones

Bucking Trends Pacific Timber having a big impact in Burns Lake

Green Power AltaGas opens three run-of-river projects

Industry Innovator

Feeding Variety

Hy-Tech Drilling invention saves on water use in mining

Nechako Valley Feeds growsby mixing it up









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Publisher Todd Hamilton Editor-in-Chief Shaun Thomas Prince Rupert Ed Evans, Sales Martina Perry, Reporter Kevin Campbell, Reporter Terrace Rod Link, Editor Brian Lindenbach, Sales Bert Husband, Sales Erin Bowker, Sales Kitimat Louisa Genzale, Sales Cameron Orr, Editor Smithers Grant Harris, Sales Nick Briere, Sales Chris Gareau, Editor Alicia Bridges, Reporter Houston Mary-Anne Ruiter, Sales Jackie Lieuwen, Reporter Burns Lake Laura Blackwell, Sales Flavio Nienow, Editor Fort St. James/ Vanderhoof Pam Berger, Sales Rebecca Watson, Reporter Haida Gwaii Quinn Bender, Sales


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ince the first issue of N2K more than a year ago, we have been highlighting not only the economic but social benefits of industry in Northwest B.C. and some naysayers were telling us we were overly-optimistic. “We’ve heard this song and dance before,” some said. “Sure, everyone has these big plans, but they never put a shovel in the ground — it’s all big promises with no delivery.” This pessimism had some credibility, but note the tense of that statement — had — past tense. Whether one is of the glass half-full or glass half-empty mindset, there is no disputing that water in the Northwest B.C. industry glass is steadily rising. As we cover in this issue of N2K, the lights are green and the shovels are in the ground. The money is being spent, the training and jobs are materializing and the benefits are being realized throughout our region. And it’s not only the big headline LNG proposals or modernization projects, the green lights are lit on projects that encompass nearly every sector and at every level. N2K editor-in-chief Shaun Thomas reports on the favourable conditional final investment decision by Pacific Northwest LNG to build an $11 billion terminal on Lelu Island. This decision sets in motion the process toward an unprecedented level of economic and social benefit for communities throughout Northwest B.C. As that announcement was made another major project moved forward. Kitimat’s Cameron Orr takes us through the significance of LNG Canada’s environmental approvals. Burns Lake’s Flavio Nienow reports how Pacific Timber has gone from a one-mill, five employee operation four years ago to two mills and 31 employees spending nearly $2 million in direct wages and another $1.3 million in local goods and services. All the while the naysayers were trumpeting the death of the forestry sector. Terrace’s Rod Link tells us how AltaGas’s $1 billion investment in Northwest B.C. paid off when three run-of-river projects along the Iskut River were officially opened recently. Yes, from multi-billion dollar projects to true ma-and-pa operations, as Vanderhoof ’s Rebecca Watson outlines with her report on Nechako Valley Feeds owners Jeremy and Jessica Seely, Northwest B.C. is humming. It’s a tune Northwest B.C. is certainly going to enjoy. Todd Hamilton N2K Publisher

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Volume 2 • Issue 4

POSITIVE DECISION Pacific NorthWest LNG going ahead 7

BIG IMPACT Small mills making major contribution 10

GREEN POWER AltaGas opens three run-of-river sites 12

July 2015

MAKING HISTORY Pinnacle sets record for largest ship 15

LEARNING ON-SITE NWCC students visit Kitsault mine 16

MINING INNOVATION Hy-Tech Drilling’s water saver 18

NOW PERMITTED LNG Canada has the go-ahead 28



220 201 172 161

BUILDING READY Chevron sets up offices in Houston 20

FEEDING VARIETY Nechako Valley Feeds mixes it up 22



GETTING DATA Ocean monitoring program launched 24

SPENDNG NUMBERS A snapshot of mining in the Northwest 26



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Coastal GasLink delivers While the LNG Canada team is focused on planning the proposed facility, another company is working hard on an important part of the overall LNG project. In 2012, TransCanada PipeLines was selected to construct and operate the Coastal GasLink pipeline that will deliver natural gas from the northeast of B.C. to the LNG Canada facility. While Coastal GasLink is a TransCanada project, its importance to the LNG Canada project can’t be ignored: simply put, without the pipeline to deliver the natural gas to our facility, there can’t be an LNG Canada project. Coastal GasLink’s Greg Cano (Director, Project Planning and Execution) tells us more about this important piece of the LNG Canada puzzle: Can you tell us about Coastal GasLink? The Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project is a proposed 670 km pipeline that will connect natural gas from Dawson Creek to LNG Canada’s proposed liquefied natural gas facility in Kitimat, B.C. In October 2014, the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office granted the project an EA Certificate. We are continuing fieldwork to fulfill the conditions of our Environmental Certificate, as well as working towards receiving the other permits required to operate the pipeline, such as permits from the B.C. Oil and Gas Commission. How has Coastal GasLink engaged with communities in Northern B.C.? We’re really proud of our engagement record. We provide opportunities for communities and First Nations groups to hear from us and ask questions; we listen to their feedback; and where possible we act on it. Like LNG Canada, Coastal GasLink is committed to ongoing engagement and consultation with the communities and First Nations where we will operate. Our pipeline will pass through 4 regional districts in Northern B.C. and there are 19 First Nations groups along the route. Since our project began, we’ve had more than 85 meetings with local governments, 44 information sessions and open houses, dozens of local and regional business events, and hundreds of other individual interactions. And, since the announcement of the project in June, 2012, we have initiated engagement with 31 First Nations, 2 Tribal Councils and 2 Metis organizations. The input

This space is a collaborative promotional venture by LNG Canada and N2K Editor Cameron Orr

Greg Cano, Director, Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project Planning and Execution, at a recent information session in Northern B.C.

we have received through these discussions and meetings has been invaluable, and we have implemented a number of changes to our original route as a result of feedback from community members and First Nations. Most recently, input from the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs prompted us to explore the potential of altering our route through Wet’suwet’en territory southwest of Houston. What are the benefits that communities in the North can expect to see from your project? Coastal GasLink shares the values and commitments of LNG Canada with respect to ensuring that local communities and First Nations benefit from our projects. Since mid-2012, we have spent more than $38 million on goods, services and wages in northern B.C. In 2014, we employed over 80 Wet’suwet’en community members to conduct fieldwork for our environmental assessment, and this year so far we have employed a similar number. In fact over one quarter of the hours spent on fieldwork for this project have been conducted by Aboriginal peoples. If our project proceeds, we anticipate that approximately 20002500 jobs will be required to construct our pipeline, and it is our intent that as many of these jobs as possible will go to B.C. residents.


Pacific NorthWest LNG announces final investment decision By Shaun Thomas


or years, many around the globe have questioned whether or not a liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry could be developed in British Columbia. Citing declining energy prices, development costs, labour costs and the overall fiscal regime, economists from the business sector and academia have cast doubt on the potential of an industry that would bring thousands of new jobs and billions of dollars of investment to the Northwest. Pacific NorthWest LNG, the company planning to build an $11 billion terminal on Lelu Island in Port Edward, put many of those questions to rest when it announced a positive, though conditional, final investment decision on June 11 “This is the culmination of the commercial terms coming together for the project, in terms of the cost side of things from an engineering and procurement perspective and the fiscal terms from a regulatory and government perspective,” said Pacific NorthWest LNG president Michael Culbert following the announcement.

“This shows that Canada can be competitive from a commercial LNG perspective.” - Michael Culbert “As the project that is the leading Canadian project in terms of making its way towards a positive final investment decision, this shows that Canada can be competitive from a commercial LNG perspective and that the natural resource, particularly in Western Canada, is very strong and will support a project that requires 20-plus years of the resource. In addition to that, it shows the fiscal regime the Province of British Columbia and the federal government have put in place is quite attractive.” See Page 8


The conditions placed on moving forward with construction have nothing to do with the economics of the export terminal, the pipeline or the extraction of the reserves. The first condition is approval of the Project Development Agreement by the B.C. Legislature, which Natural Gas Development Minister Rich Coleman said could occur as early as this month, and the second is the granting of an environmental assessment permit from the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA). The significance of the company only identifying two regulatory conditions that could affect construction was not lost on Minister Coleman. “We’re pretty happy with the progress that has been made because there are just two conditions and neither is related to whether or not there is a market or the cost of construction ... they have the market, they have the gas sold and they know the prices. Now they have a project that is totally commercially viable,” he said. “This is a milestone. It shows we can be competitive with gas on a global scale.” One of the keys to reaching this milestone, said Culbert, was finding partners that wanted to be both customers and part-owners of the terminal. Pacific NorthWest LNG includes 15 per cent ownership by China’s Sinopec, 10 per cent ownership by both Japex and the India Oil Company


“There are just two conditions and neither is related to whether of not there is a market.” - Rich Coleman and a three per cent ownership stake by Petroleum Brunei. “We have been very particular in having our partners be vertically integrated so they are participating in the drilling of the gas wells, converting it to liquefied natural gas and then taking that LNG into their own markets and jurisdictions,” he said. “It’s always a difficult situation to make a long-term decision during a downturn in the commodity cycle, but from Petronas’ perspective and in the view of our shareholder partners this is a long-term view that needs to look at the LNG contracts we have in place.” As for next steps for the company, Culbert said the focus is addressing a request for additional information from CEAA. See Page 9

“The supplemental information request from CEAA really focused on the marine infrastructure, so that is what’s really being looked at and modelled. We have a 1.6 kilometre suspension bridge so we are modelling that, as well as the berth for loading the ships. That is all being very scientifically modelled as to what, if any, impact it could have on fish habitat in the Flora Bank area,” he said, noting a positive final investment decision is by no means the end of community consultations. “In a long-term project of this nature we are going to have ongoing dialogue with stakeholders within the region, including First Nations, from the upstream development all the way to the coastal terminal. That is going to go on throughout the life of the project.”

The final investment decision will be confirmed by the partners of Pacific NorthWest LNG once the two outstanding foundational conditions have been resolved. Culbert said he is not sure when that would take place. “It is difficult to assess a time frame, it really comes down to the additional clarifying work that needs to be done to satisfy the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency. We’re working very closely with them and other federal agencies to satisfy the terms of this additional three-dimensional modelling and getting specific clarity on what questions they are asking,” he said. “We’re working on that, but it is very difficult to assess exactly what that time frame is right now.”

Small mills having a

BIG IMPACT Pacific Timber bucking the forest industry trend By Flavio Nienow


ot so long ago, there were hundreds of small, independent sawmills in British Columbia’s Central Interior. For decades, these mills — some of them little more than ‘mom-and-pop’ operations — were the economic backbone of rural B.C., providing much-needed jobs and a host of other benefits to remote communities. In the past two decades, however, B.C.’s forest industry has become increasingly dominated by large, multinational players with the financial resources and expertise to compete in what has become a global marketplace. Today, five major companies control most long-term forest tenures in the province, and independent sawmills are all but a thing of the past. But in Burns Lake, one company is bucking the trend — and proving that it’s possible to survive in the shadow of big industry. Pacific Timber, a wholly-owned subsidiary of Tahtsa Timber, opened for business in 2011 with one mill and five employees. A scant four years later, the Burns Lake company has expanded its operations to include two mills and 31 employees. In 2014, it spent $1.9 million in direct wages and another $1.3 million in goods and services. “In the community last year, just between Burns Lake Auto, LD Printing, all the small stuff — no power, no fuel, nothing — the two mills spent $351,000 in town,” said Pacific Timber’s mill manager Karl Garrett. “That is just the two mills, none of the bush crew or Tahtsa. And in the region that’s between Houston and Prince George... we spent $971,000.” Garrett and Stephen Burkholder, general manager of Tahtsa Timber, have been telling the Pacific Timber story to almost anyone who will listen lately and they appeared before Burns Lake council on May 12.


“Between Houston and Prince George ... we spent $971,000.” - Karl Garrett Garrett told council members that the company’s two mills — one in the Burns Lake industrial park, the other east of town adjacent Babine Forest Products — specialize in producing cants. Ten per cent of the company’s production is sold to B.C. customers, while 15 per cent is shipped to buyers in Alberta. Fully threequarters of all finished products are transported by truck to Prince Rupert, where they’re loaded into containers for export to Asia. “We produce nothing that the majors produce,” Garrett stressed. “Primarily, all our stuff goes to Asia (and the) oil and gas industry — tenon blocks for rig mats, pipe skids. And the treating market. The really low grade stuff that we have goes to pallet manufacturers.” In 2014, Pacific Timber shipped 14.6 million board feet, the equivalent of 456 super ‘B’ truck loads. This year, production is projected to be 24 million board feet. Because it strives for maximum log utilization, Pacific Timber also supplies the Pinnacle Renewable Energy Group’s Burns Lake plant with fibre. In 2014, the company supplied the wood pellet producer with 1,450 truck loads of chips, and even sold some of the material to farmers for cattle bedding. See Page 11

Garrett and Burkholder stressed to council the important role Pacific Timber plays in the community. In addition to the economic benefits already mentioned, the company’s two mills provide much-needed entry level jobs, often employing people that other firms might be hesitant to hire. It even offers apprenticeships to candidates who express an interest in millwrighting, mechanics, welding, and other trades. “We’re willing to try anybody, where before, we would try to find the right person,” Garrett said. “If you can get here at 7 a.m. and you can make it to 5:30 p.m. and give it your all, we’ll train you to do the rest.” To date, this liberal hiring policy has paid dividends, both for Pacific Timber and the community. Approximately 45 per cent of the company’s employees are First Nations people who come from as far away as Fort St. James, and many of them had little or no experience prior to joining Pacific Timber. Garrett acknowledges that employee turnover is high. Fully 30 per cent of Pacific Timber’s new hires leave after getting valuable experience in the workforce. Being a training ground for other companies was something Pacific Timber struggled with initially, says Burkholder, but has since come to accept. “First we battled that,” he noted. “There was a certain amount of frustration, because you’d get a good guy, and then he’d be gone. But actually, we’ve come to more see ourselves as that stepping stone for people. They come, they work, and some move on. Thankfully, we have a really solid, core group that has displayed a lot of

loyalty, but at the same time, for those that want to move on, well, we feel we’re part of that. I think it’s certainly a value in our company, and a value for the area.” Burkholder says the company will continue to actively seek timber on the open market, and “attempt to continue to salvage wood that is deemed unutilizable (by other producers).” In the meantime, he and Garrett want local residents to know the contribution Pacific Timber is making.


Running on AltaGas opens three hydroelectic projects in the Northwest By Rod Link


early $1 billion of capital expenditure in northwestern B.C. was realized with the official opening of three run-of-river power projects along the Iskut River. Developed by Calgary-based energy company AltaGas, the largest of the three — the Forrest Kerr facility at 195 megawatts — and the smallest — Volcano Creek, at 16 megawatts — began producing power last year while the 66-megawatt McLymont Creek facility is to be finished this year. On hand for the June 2 opening were members from the Tahltan First Nation, on whose traditional territory the projects are located, Tahltan Central Council president Chad Day, Energy and Mines Minister Bill Bennett, Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister John Rustad and AltaGas chairman and chief executive officer David Cornhill. Power produced by the facilities is being sold to BC Hydro and feedinto the provincial grid through a substation at Bob Quinn, the end point of BC Hydro’s Northwest Transmission Line which itself was finished last August. Speaking after the opening, Bennett called the three


“Without these projects, we wouldn’t have a Northwest Transmission Line.” - Bill Bennett projects a crucial addition to northwest infrastructure. “Without these projects we wouldn’t have a Northwest Transmission Line,” said Bennett. AltaGas paid a lump sum and is making annual payments which together will total $180 million toward the $716 million cost of the Northwest Transmission Line. Its power sales deal with BC Hydro is for 60 years. The 287kv line is also expected to lead to other northwestern developments, chiefly mining projects. And having a power producer such as the AltaGas northwest projects adds a level of supply security, Bennett added. See Page 13

“They’re a great safety net. If you have an outage or something somewhere down the line, we now have a closer power source for projects in the area,” he said. Bennett also pointed to the agreements struck between AltaGas and the Tahltan Central Council for each of the three projects as a boost to the economy of the Northwest and as a stable revenue source for the Tahltan. “There are financial benefits, there are other benefits. This shows the value of a strong working relationship,” he said. The two economic benefits agreements for McLymont Creek and Volcano Creek alone are to bring in an estimated $560 million in total financial benefits to the Tahltan people over the life of the projects, the Tahltan Central Council has stated. The benefits include revenue sharing, profit sharing, scholarships and, in the case of the Volcano Creek facility, partial ownership by the Tahltan. Bennett also noted that run-of-river projects, in which water is diverted through generators before returning to the same river, have a lighter environmental footprint than traditional dam-based hydroelectric projects. While the Forrest Kerr project takes water from the Iskut River, the Volcano Creek project takes water from the creek after which it is named and a tributary of the Iskut River. As is the case with Volcano Creek, the McLymont Creek project will take water from the creek of that

“It is great to see the local benefits coming from such projects as AltaGas has hired and continues to hire locally.” - Philippe Bernier name. AltaGas was the recipient of the Project Excellence Award for its Forrest Kerr project last October, the largest of its kind in North America, sponsored by the Clean Energy B.C. Association. Through a four-year construction schedule, the $725 million Forrest Kerr project employed hundreds of workers, including members of the Tahltan Nation. Approximately one million cubic metres of rock was excavated to create a three kilometre tunnel through which water flows to turbines. The total expenditure of $1 billion on the three projects represents the largest financial commitment made by AltaGas, which was founded in 1994. Among the northwest companies contracted to work on the projects was BV Electric of Telkwa, which at one time had 100 electricians employed in various capacities. See Page 14


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“It is great to see the local benefits coming from such projects as AltaGas has hired and continues to hire locally,” said BV Electric’s Philippe Bernier. BV Electric’s entryway to the projects was a contract to wire a camp for construction workers. “That proved our capability and gave us a foot in the door,” said Bernier. “We’ve been involved in other activity, specifically hydro – we were on the Long Lake project near Stewart – but this was our largest.” He added that finding enough electricians was a challenge, but that word-of-mouth through company employees helped assemble the needed workforce for the projects.

The three AltaGas projects are not the only ones owned by the company in the region. It bought Pacific Northern Gas, the region’s natural gas utility, in late 2011. Using that purchase as a springboard, AltaGas is now a partner in two potential liquefied natural gas (LNG) developments in the Northwest. One, Douglas Channel LNG at Kitimat, would see AltaGas and its partners use up the surplus capacity of the Pacific Northern Gas gas pipeline to supply a barge-based LNG plant at Kitimat. The other, Triton LNG, would see the construction of another gas pipeline to feed an LNG plant at either Kitimat or Prince Rupert.


new world record was set in Prince Rupert on June 2 when the M/V Popi S sailed away from Westview Terminal with almost 60,000 tons of wood pellets destined for Drax Power in the UK — the largest load of wood pellets shipped in the history of the industry. “Pinnacle is excited about

its leadership in the use of Panamax’s for wood pellets,” said Vaughan Bassett, Pinnacle’s senior vice-president of sales and logistics. “They are presently an under-utilized class of vessel, so this additional cargo option will suit ship owners, shippers and receivers alike.”

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From classroom to Kitsault NWCC students go hands-on at molybdenum mine By Rod Link


ight Nisga’a students taking a Northwest Community College mining program put some of their classwork and training into action recently by touring a planned molybdenum mine at Kitsault on the north coast. The students took ground and surface water samples and took part in sediment and erosion control work at Alloycorp’s Avanti Kitsault project. “We value and view students in programs such as this as a key to building our future workforce. In the future, as our needs for qualified and trained individuals expand, we are looking at how to include students into our workforce, and one option may be through summer student placements,”


said Kim Humphreys, the vice president for people and culture at Alloycorp Mining Inc., the parent company of Avanti Kitsault Mine Ltd. This was the first time Avanti Kitsault participated in the college program and it looks forward to future opportunities, she added. Engineering consultants from the Knight Piesold firm worked with the students on the tour as did two employees from the joint venture company Hobiyee-Triton. The students were enrolled in the environmental monitoring assistant program through Northwest Community College’s exploration and mining school.

Instruction over 330 hours included terrestrial and aquatic monitoring, construction and industrial monitoring, natural resource field skills, and cultural resource management. Students also acquire first aid and field safety certifications, as well as job readiness skills. “Students graduate with a network of industry contacts to help their transition to employment or act as mentors, and they also gain a realistic window into potential career opportunities,” said college official Danielle Smyth of the monitoring assistant program. It was held in the Nass Valley earlier this year in conjunction with the Wilp Wilxo’oskwhl Nisga’a Institute

“We are looking at how to include students into our workforce.” - Kim Humphreys and financed through Nisga’a Employment, Skills and Training and Aboriginal Affairs and the federal government.


Industry Innovation Hy-Tech Drilling reducing exploration water requirements By Chris Gareau


device modified at Hy-Tech Drilling in Smithers is greatly reducing the amount of water needed at mine exploration sites. “It reduces water consumption at the drill site, but it also removes the drill cuttings from the return water that comes back up the hole,” said Hy-Tech vice president of business development Brian Butterworth. “Those drill cuttings can be removed and transported or dealt with through whatever means is developed by the proponent to get rid of those solids, versus conventional methods where the return usually goes into an artificially created depression or sump ... the permit usually requires burial of those cuttings.” Approximately 90 per cent of the water can be reused, an environmental solution for mine sites. “There are more and more concerns about the material that comes up from the drill hole to the surface ... In many cases they’re benign cuttings; they’re the same composition as the rock that they come from,” said Butterworth. “But we’re hearing more and more from government personnel, for example, there’s a concern by community First Nations about the management of those drill cuttings in the future and there’s definitely a focus on water management these days ... this project is hugely


“There are water management issues in our industry and this is one pretty substantial solution.” - Brian Butterworth beneficial in that regard.” Hy-Tech bought the centrifuge that spins at 3,600 rpm. The research and development team in Smithers then modified it before sending it to job sites and connecting it to drill equipment. “There will be five or six deployed this year,” said Butterworth. It was mining companies themselves that asked Hy-Tech to devise a way to help manage water consumption and drill cuttings. “There are water management issues in our industry and this is one pretty substantial solution to those problems,” said Butterworth. See Page 19

“It seems to be the way of the future, where other companies are going as well ... we took on a new client this year who specifically requested that our drill rigs be equipped with that unit because they see in the future a requirement for the removal of cuttings and the reuse of water to reduce consumption,� added Butterworth. The portability and affordability of the machine makes it cost effective for Hy-Tech to provide the service to mines. “We designed them to be movable with a helicopter and set up in the same way that our drill equipment is, so they can be deployed at an underground exploration or mine operation; they can be deployed with a fly drill rig into remote areas where a lot of our drilling activity takes place,� said Butterworth. Once on site and hooked up, the machine can be run by the drill crew. No specialized operators are needed. “Therefore the cost of bringing one of these in to our drilling equipment is not onerous,� explained Butterworth. Hy-Tech is mostly focused on exploration drilling, but the device could be incorporated into mining operations as well. The company does not want to become an equipment manufacturer, but can see a deal being made in the future. “I think we would probably make this available, or a supply company could make this available to other drilling service providers,� suggested Butterworth.

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Build ready Chevron sets up offices in Houston as pipeline work nears By Jackie Lieuwen


hevron is opening a field office in the Houston Industrial Park for pre-construction activities for the proposed Pacific Trail Pipeline (PTP). The office will open for the field construction season, from late-June or July until October or early-November, said Gillian Robinson, communications officer for Kitimat LNG and Chevron Canada. “This is not a work camp. We do not have plans for a work camp in the area at this time,” she said. The office will have eight trailers and will be a base for field crews in the Houston region. Robinson said they expect 12 people working from the office and contractors from time to time. They will be doing environmental and archaeological field studies, upgrading and maintenance on access roads, centreline surveying and flagging, flagging boundaries and clearing the right of way, Robinson said. She says this year Kitimat LNG is focusing on a section of the Pacific Trails Pipeline about 25 kilometres south of Houston. It starts in the Owen Hill area and continues 54 kilometres west..


“We also have support to begin this work from all 16 First Nations bands along the proposed PTP route.” - Gillian Robinson The total planned length of the PTP is 480 kilometres. Robinson says they have been doing this type of pre-construction work for the last two summers in the Terrace-area, which is the western portion of the proposed right of way. The Houston office they are setting up will not be open to the public. Robinson says hiring for early works this year will be done by the main contractor, Shas PTP Ltd. See Page 21

They were contracted to do clearing and build access roads on the eastern portion of the Pacific Trails Pipeline (PTP). Shas is a First Nations-owned company and much of the sub-contracted work this summer will also be with First Nations companies, or companies in a joint venture with First Nations companies that are contracted through Shas PTP Ltd., explained Robinson. Falcon Contracting, who is setting up the office in Houston, is 100 percent First Nations owned and operated.

“We also have support to begin this work from all 16 First Nations bands along the proposed PTP route who are partners in the project through the First Nations Limited Partnership.” Chevron received permits for this pre-construction work from the Oil and Gas Commission in April Actual construction of the pipeline will not begin until a final investment decision is made. Robinson said the company does not have an esitmated date for the announcement of a final investment decision at this time.


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Different feeds for

DIFFERENT NEEDS Nechako Valley Feeds offers up nutrition and expertise By Rebecca Watson


e are what we eat — and animals are no different. Farmer Dennis Richardson, 69, lives by these words when purchasing food for the hundreds of chickens and turkeys at Newsat Farms, his micro abattoir (slaughterhouse) located just outside Vanderhoof. He says his go-to feed store, Nechako Valley Feeds, is the key ingredient to the growth of his birds. “Feed is instrumental and Nechako Valley Feeds has what my birds need,” Richardson said, adding his turkey feed is 26 per cent protein and chicken feed 16 per cent. “Protein is muscle mass and muscle mass is meat.” Nechako Valley Feeds owners Jeremy and Jessica Seely bring a lifetime of experience to the table when serving the needs of their husbandry clientele. The couple opened the animal feed-and-retail store in December 2014 and have since become a well known supplier in northern B.C., with clients from Prince George to Burns Lake. “If you eat a locally-grown fresh chicken versus one from a grocery store counter, there is no question, it’s


“You also want to match the demand of the animal to its feed.” - Jeremy Seely totally different. It’s why we’re in this business,” Jeremy said. Nechako Valley Feeds carries just about every farm animal feed including cow, horse, pig, poultry, dog and rabbit to name a few. The other half of the store is pet supplies such as feeders, buckets, fencing, grooming tools and more. Jeremy says while they do have a couple of large clients such as Newsat Farms, who just hauled away a 1,000 kg bag of chicken feed for their season open, generally they stock for and focus mostly on smaller operations. See Page 23

“There’s definitely a niche here in Vanderhoof. The community we serve is very active in backyard and 4-H type husbandry. My favourite part [of owning this store] is the connection we get with customers and all their different stories. Everyone’s doing it for a different reason,” Jeremy said. Nechako Valley Feeds carries a variety of blends to help best match feed to the animal. Starter, grower and finisher feeds are typically what is used to grow an animal for re-sale. “But you also want to match the demand of the animal to its feed. For example a barrel-racer horse needs high energy because it’s working hard for 15 seconds so they would need more sugar for a burst of energy. A trail riding horse needs more carbohydrates because they need higher energy for a longer period of time,” Jeremy said. Sometimes customers ask about organic feed with added questions on genetically modified (GMO) products. “I’m happy to offer the non-GMO feeds for those airing on the side of caution, but personally I don’t know if we know enough about it to make assumptions. Locally, organic feeds are on the rise, but it just hasn’t reached a critical mass to carry itself so it’s hard to have it [in stock],” he said, adding they have been known to order in something they didn’t have. Medicated blends are also offered at Nechako Valley Feeds and prove to be important for proper growth, especially for poultry as all birds are born with Coccidiosis, among other things, Richardson said. “They don’t get sick from it because they build an immunity from it, but the little guys have to be protected


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until they’re four weeks old by vaccination or medicated feed or else you run the risk of getting Salmonella,” Richardson said. “We wouldn’t have a business if we didn’t have good quality and safe food which is why I’ve stuck with Jeremy. He has a wealth of knowledge about not just feeds but poultry nutrition, diseases, management and care. Everything you want in a good feed supplier.”

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Industry interest leads to new data collection system By Cameron Orr


n the same lot as Kitamaat Village’s waste water treatment plant there are plans to install an ocean monitoring system that will provide publicly available information about the goings on in the Douglas Channel. Ocean Networks Canada is working with the University of Victoria to install the ocean monitoring equipment, which will collect data via underwater cables connected to the land-based observatory. According to Ocean Network Canada’s business analyst Teron Moore, the project builds on previous cabled observatories on Vancouver Island, named Venus and Neptune. “We’ve taken that expertise in the science and engineering and tried to look for ways to apply that … to more science-based applications that would enhance communities and coastal priorities,” said Moore. Moore said the Douglas Channel and Kitimat is an ideal choice for the program given that it’s an area of “huge provincial and national change”. Essentially, this area is where scientific monitoring will be a priority. “It made perfect sense for the university to expand our ability to monitor ocean and environmental aspects in


“It’s for anybody who is interested in unbiased data.” - Teron Moore that area, essentially trying to get in before a lot of that change occurs and try to work with the community to identify what their main priorities are,” he said, adding that working with the Haisla provided an obvious benefit to understand community priorities. The data being collected ranges from sub-sea noise to acidity and temperature. Ocean Networks points to a number of benefits to the program, from marine safety — monitoring incidents and ship tracking, among their abilities — to public safety through monitoring ground shaking. On the environmental side it will be able to track any changes to ocean conditions. See Page 25

The information collected will be public and not just for whoever wants to pay. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s for anybody whoâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s interested in unbiased data that weâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;d be collecting,â&#x20AC;? he said, adding it will be posted to the Internet as well. He said theyâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;ll have a component of their overall program to make the information accessible in the sense that raw data might not mean much to the average person. The information will essentially be collected in real-time, continuously through the cables. Moore said itâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s not yet known how far out the sensor cables will go, but it will be a fine line not to go too far south or too close to the river. â&#x20AC;&#x153;Thereâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s some areas that would be more interesting than

others,â&#x20AC;? he said. He did note they wonâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;t be as long as the Neptune and Venus cables which, for the whole loop, reach up to 800 kilometres. Other sites being proposed for similar programs include Prince Rupert, Hartley Bay, Campbell River and Port Alberni. Ocean Networks Canada do still have to secure their permits before installing their observatory. An application for the installation of underwater equipment is going through the system and an application for Crown Land tenure was also submitted, as the observatory does pass through foreshore areas. Installation will begin once permits are secured.

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By Jeff Kyba Regional Geologist, B.C. Ministry of Energy and Mines






161 140



orthwest B.C.’s Skeena 100 100 Region remains the most active mineral 65 exploration region in British 55 Columbia, despite a decline in 50 exploration spending across the 21 entire province. 10 7 The Skeena Region represents 0 approximately 28 per cent of 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 4 YEAR mainland British Columbia, covering over 253,000 square companies and junior explorers was the opportunity to kilometres. compile and interpret historical data and drill core. Companies spent $161 million exploring for minerals in Mine development expenditures totalled about $208 the northwest in 2014. This is a 20 per cent decrease over million in Skeena. At least $300 million was spent on the 2013 figure, reflecting the world-wide decline in mineral infrastructure projects directly related to the mining and exploration spending. Similarly, regional exploration drilling exploration industry, including hydro transmission lines and decreased by 39 per cent to 151,204 metres. port expansions in Stewart and Prince Rupert representing Some major programs continued to drill, expand, and long term investment in the region. define deposits in 2014. Other projects fortunate enough Th ere are 80 active exploration and advanced projects in to secure funding completed drilling and geophysical Skeena, including these advanced projects: surveys. Many explorers took the fiscally challenging days — Imperial Metals started mining and continued as an opportunity to conduct inexpensive work such as construction at the Red Chris copper-gold project soil sampling, prospecting and geological mapping. These — Banks Island Gold began producing at the Yellow Giant activities allowed workers to get into the field without gold project exhausting the treasury, while still generating new data. A See Page 27 benefit of a slower season realized by both major mining

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350 METRES — Alloycorp began 350 construction activities at their DRILLED IN 310 Kitsault molybdenum-silver 300 project Seabridge Gold received NORTHWEST BC 270 their Environmental approval 2001 TO 2014 249 and initial construction permits 250 for their KSM gold-copper project 197 200 — Pretivm Resources delivered 169 a feasibility study for their high151 grade gold Brucejack project 144 150 —Northwest Transmission line to Bob Quinn Lake and 92 extension to Red Chris was 100 commissioned 57 — Gold Reach Resources 50 38 expanded resources at Ootsa by 87 per cent —Colorado Resources released 0 2001 2002 2003 2004 2005 2006 2007 2008 2009 2010 2011 2012 2013 2014 a maiden resource at the North YEAR ROK copper-gold project and completed an exploration per cent increase in metal production in 2013, the latest program at the KSP gold project reporting period for the mine. Higher grades and better —B.C. Geological Survey geologists completed year two of recovery during 2013 resulted in a metal production increase the Northern Porphyry Project at the Bronson Trend of 17 per cent. Total output was 18,693 tonnes copper, 92.8 Metal Mountain Resources applied for an amendment to kilograms gold, and 7403.5 kilograms silver from 5,895,193 their existing Mines Act Permit to build a 250 tonne per day tonnes of ore mined from the Main Zone Extension pit onsite mill at their Dome Mountain gold near Smithers This summary is based on the complete report “Exploration The main operating mine in the Skeena Region is the and mining in the Skeena Region”. Huckleberry Mine southwest of Houston. It reported a 17 THOUSANDS OF METRES




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By Cameron Orr


NG Canada is hailing the approval of environmental certificates from the province and from Ottawa as a major success for their project, and it’s possible that some early works could take place in the fall. The company said they weren’t ready to confirm if any early works might take place in Kitimat later in the year — that would be contingent on permits and design work being completed — but there is the potential for extra people around town later. “If we do decide to do that as early as lets say this fall, you might see some additional folks in town but we haven’t made a decision on that yet,” said LNG Canada’s Susannah Pierce. She adds you wouldn’t see anywhere close to the level of manpower for such work as you would see for full on construction. As for the topic of full construction, it still remains to be seen if there will be positive final investment decision (FID) and Pierce said that, as always, there’s no date on when that may happen. “[The environmental certificate’s] certainly a very positive step in that direction,” she said about FID. “We’re trying to make sure that we put the most compelling and robust case in front of our partners to make a decision in favour of LNG Canada. When we think about the time frame for when we want to see this project happen, we want to do that as soon as we possibly can. But in order to make the robust case we need to make sure we have the information. So the environmental approvals ... is a significant milestone in putting together that package. I


think we’d like to see delivery of that FID package and some decisions as quickly as we can.” She suggested the FID package could be submitted within a year from now. Meanwhile Pierce says a lot of the conditions in their environmental certificate were expected already, the certificate is in effect just formalizing the requirements. “A lot of them were things we anticipated just based on the work group’s feedback, based on our own discussions with First Nations, the regulator, the community. When we received them it was confirmation of what we expected for the most part ...we feel pretty good about our ability to meet those,” she said. She said the plant has always been designed to have the least amount of emissions possible, and she believes there will not be any significant health impacts as a result of their facility. The company is also working with regulators to manage any potential impacts to marine ecosystems. “You can’t completely eliminate all fishery impact but what we have been doing is try to avoid it as much as possible but then build some robust habitat compensation plans, which would be part of not only the assessment here but a review under the Department of Fisheries and Oceans,” said Pierce. From here, from a regulatory standpoint, LNG Canada still requires certain authorizations under the Fishery Act for disposal of clean dredge material, and are working towards concluding a TERMPOL review, which is a voluntary review of all matters regarding marine shipping and transportation.


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Huckleberry Mines Ltd. is a Vancouver based mine company which operates a 16,400 TPD open pit copper molybdenum mine located 120 km south of Houston in west central British Columbia. The Mine Maintenance Team ha expanded to the meet the challenges of the Main Zone Optimization (MZO) Project expansion.



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Generalist Social Worker QUALIFICATIONS: BSW, plus two year related experience REQUIREMENTS tWe are looking for individuals who are delegated or are eligible to be delegated under the current Provincial (BC) Legislation tWillingness to travel tHave a valid BC driverâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s license tMust successfully pass a Criminal Records Check With respect to case management, the Generalist Social Worker will: tComplete Comprehensive Plans of Care in accordance with AOPSI Standards tReview Plans of care through formal meetings whenever possible and within specified timeframes tSet priorities for service delivery in consultation with the Supervisor tConduct Case Management Meetings at regular intervals to ensure that services to the child are coordinated and appropriate t Include the child in decision making as appropriate to the childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s developmental abilities tWhere possible, ensure the child signs his summary recordings so he understands what is in his file tRecord the Service Plan and Goals for the child tMaintain up to date recordings in the format required by the agency tEnsure that the childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s medical, emotional and educational needs are met through referrals to appropriate professionals tInform the child about behavioural expectations and consequences tConsult the resource worker, childâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s family the community and the child where this is age appropriate when moving or placing a child tEnsure that appropriate action is taken when a child is missing, lost or has run away tEnsure that the GCFS Executive Director and the Director for Child Protection are notified of reportable circumstances and grievous incidents tEnsure consultation with the supervisor at all key decision points (see the AOPSI) tEnsure that children in care receive the support skills and guidance required to achieve independence upon leaving care at the age of 19 Please submit your resume and cover letter to the attention of: Team Leader, Gitxsan Child & Family Services Society P.O. Box 333 4215 Government Street, HAZELTON, BC V0J 1Y0 DEADLINE: (until position is filled) No phone calls please, only those who have made the shortlist will be contacted.

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Trade is building stronger communities. The Port of Prince Rupert is growing opportunities and prosperity by connecting the communities of northern BC. Last year, port activity was directly responsible for the equivalent of 3,060 permanent full-time jobs. Watch and share our video tribute to the workers and families of BCâ&#x20AC;&#x2122;s gateway industry: | @rupertport

n2k - N2K - July 2015  


n2k - N2K - July 2015