NEED TO KNOW
JULY 2016 • VOL. 3, ISSUE 3
QUESTION Environment Minister now on the clock to decide the fate of Northwest B.C.’s LNG future The Lelu Island story
Inside N 2 K World Port
Great first year for Stewart port operations
Higher gold prices driving acquisitions in Iskut area
Money Maker Burns Lake idea to help tourism, create jobs
Pellet Power Vanderhoof wood company going 24/5 for fifth summer
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to participate in field studies to see how they “I collect information for theas EEMKPAC member havethe theopportunity opportunity “I have as aaKPAC member program. The BC MoE is usually represented stakeholders, as well as environmental and participateininfield fieldstudies studiesto tosee seehow how totoKPAC participate The EEM program is a comprehensive program at the meetings so we have the The EEM program a comprehensive program technical experts is and the Ministry of the they collect information for the EEM they collect information for the to discuss this program withEEM that wasdeveloped developed withthe feedback fromlocal local opportunity Environment. What does EEM involve?: that was with feedback from program. TheBC BC MoE usually represented also. 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Because air emission anticipated to be at levels similar to when the communityresults input asof move forward.” thus our monitoring results ofwe our monitoring thus far far confirm confirm Members of the KPAC and the community participated in EEM field research in 2015. old smelter was operating. This is because – Shawn Zettler, Rio Tinto concentrations are on concentrations aredependent dependent onweather weather the conclusions of the extensive studies The EEM program is a comprehensive program
that was developed with feedback from local The EEM Program The EEM Program
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Providing Providingyou youwith withthe theinformation informationyou youneed need
Through Throughthe theEEM EEMprogram, program,we wehave havecommitted committedtotoextensive extensivemonitoring, monitoring,regular regularreporting, reporting,and andmeasureable measureableactions actionswhen whenrequired. required. We We recently recentlyinitiated initiateda aweekly weeklyreport reportthat thatprovides providesaasummary summaryofofkey keyobservations observationsfrom fromour ourair airemissions emissionsmonitoring monitoringprogram. program. We We expect, expect, that that based basedon onfeedback, feedback,these thesereports reportswill willevolve evolveover overtime. time.We Wewill willalso alsobe belooking lookingatatother othercommunication communicationmethods methodsto to share share information information about about 1 our operations, including an online version of these reports. If you have feedback for us about the EEM program and our reporting, we 2016-06-10 2:36 PM our operations, including an online version of these reports. If you have feedback for us about the EEM program and our reporting, we encourage encourage you youtotoshare shareititwith withususbybyemailing emailingKitimatUpdates@riotinto.com KitimatUpdates@riotinto.com
You’ve told us jobs are important. Many LNG careers require science and math. We’re doing what we can now to excite young people about science and math so they have more choices when choosing a career. Congratulations to School District 52 on improving the way math is taught to its students. Carole Fullerton, a BC math consultant, has worked with SD52 for the last two years. Her mission is to help teachers and parents make math more exciting. Her approach has paid off. Teachers are seeing improved engagement and understanding in their math students. Carole will continue working with SD52 throughout the 2016/2017 school year. Her focus will be on grades K-3, 4-6, and 7-9. We are proud to support this initiative! Carole Fullerton provides coaching to a group of parents during Parent Night. Prince Rupert LNG is a proposed LNG facility on Ridley Island near Prince Rupert, BC. To learn more about what we’re doing now, visit www.princerupertlng.ca/socialinvestment. Stay up-to-date by signing up for our email updates on our Contact us page. We also encourage you to come visit Rosa and Herb at our local Prince Rupert office located at 610 2nd Avenue West.
NEED TO KNOW
Publisher & Editor-in-Chief Todd Hamilton Prince Rupert Ed Evans, Sales Kevin Campbell, Reporter Shannon Lough, Reporter Terrace Rod Link, Editor Ben Bengston, Reporter Bert Husband, Sales Erin Bowker, Sales Kitimat Louisa Genzale, Sales Smithers Grant Harris, Sales Nick Briere, Sales Chris Gareau, Editor Houston Mary-Anne Ruiter, Sales Burns Lake Laura Blackwell, Sales Flavio Nienow, Editor Fort St. James/ Vanderhoof Pam Berger, Sales Vivian Chui, Reporter Barbara Latkowski, Reporter Haida Gwaii Quinn Bender, Sales Andrew Hudson, Reporter N2K CONTACT INFO:
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NORTHWEST B.C.’S INDUSTRY MAGAZINE
ur fate is in the Honourable Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna’s hands now. As Prince Rupert reporter Kevin Campell describes in his N2K feature this month, the $11.4 billion Pacific NorthWest LNG project proposed for Lelu Island just off the shore near the District of Port Edward and Prince Rupert, is heading to the pivotal moment. On June 27, Pacific NorthWest LNG submitted its final response to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA). In what has been an arduous journey to say the least, the CEAA announced that Pacific Northwest LNG had jumped through all the necessary hoops in its assessment and has been accepted as satisfactory. McKenna now has 90 days [end of September] to decide if she will give the LNG project the final federal stamp of approval. Already, Pacific NorthWest LNG had announced a positive Final Investment Decision in June 2015, subject to two conditions. The first condition was satisfied on July 21, 2015 when the Project Development Agreement was passed by the province. The second and final condition, McKenna’s signature to approve the project. A green light will signal an economic resurgence with tangible social benefits of immense proportions. Will there be some negative effects — absolutely, but the pros most certainly outweigh the cons, by a vast margin. This project is a generational opportunity for Northwest B.C. For more than a decade Northwest B.C. has been tantalized with talk of gamechanging projects, not unlike that of the Alcan success story of many years past. But for more than a decade, we have found out the hard way. These projects have an expiry date. Just recently, due to global conditions, Canpotex decided not to pursue a nearly $1 billion project on Ridley Island near Prince Rupert. It was a hard lesson that these projects have a shelf life and if we navel gaze too long, they will disappear. It’s up to McKenna now. Pacific Northwest LNG has done everything asked of it and a clear majority of Northwest B.C. peoples, governments and businesses want this project to proceed. The time is now to say “yes” Honourable Minister. Todd Hamilton N2K Publisher firstname.lastname@example.org
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Volume 3 • Issue 3
IN THIS ISSUE
DECISION TIME Pacific NorthWest LNG Lelu Island project now in the hands of environment minister 7
DEMAND SUPPLY Vanderhoof pellet plant humming 15
MONEY MAKER Trail-clearing to create jobs 17
GREAT YEAR ELEPHANT COUNTRY Stewart World Port’s offload of massive wind Seabridge’s planned acquisition of SnipGold farm components shows viability 11 shows burgeoning action near Iskut 14
WOOD HELP Babine First Nation wants partners 18
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With the help of two students during his presentation to Mount Elizabeth Senior Secondary School in May, Neandross visually explains what happens when natural gas is cooled into a liquid: it shrinks in volume by 600 times (about the different between a beachball and a baseball)
How does LNG behave? To ensure the community knows as much as possible about LNG as a product, LNG Canada recently held a number of demonstrations in Kitimat and Terrace to show students, seniors and the general public just exactly how LNG behaves. Erik Neandross is on the stage, wearing safety goggles, gloves, a long jacket, and offers a welcoming smile to those in the audience who’ve come to learn more. Natural gas, or more specifically liquefied natural gas (LNG), could be a cornerstone of B.C.’s economy. From beneath the ground in northeast B.C., the plan is to pipe natural gas to the proposed LNG Canada facility, where it would be cooled to -162 degrees Celsius, and loaded in its liquid form onto specialized tankers for delivery to Asian markets. Natural gas, as a quick chemistry lesson, is a hydrocarbon, which means it’s made up of hydrogen and carbon atoms. In a liquefied form, LNG is a very safe product, and Neandross does a great job of demonstrating this to his audience. This space is a collaborative promotional venture by LNG Canada and N2K
The demonstration effectively shows that should a tanker carrying the LNG ever spill, which is extremely unlikely, the LNG would remain on the surface of the water and quickly evaporate as the temperature around it would be so much warmer, even on the coldest day in Kitimat. Nothing would remain in or on the water. At most, there will be a layer of ice on the surface, and Neandross demonstrates this using a sample of LNG poured into a beaker of water. And after the liquid turns into a vapour and evaporates, he drinks the water to show that it has not been contaminated by the LNG. To ignite LNG, it has to first turn back into a gas; you then need a heat source of at least 580 degrees Celsius. As well, the concentration of the gas has to be within five to 15 per cent in the air. Outside of that, it won’t burn. Neandross demonstrates this by placing a vapour release cap over his beaker of LNG, which allows a small stream of the gas to release upward. He then uses a long-neck lighter to find the exact spot in the air that the gas begins to burn. He starts six
feet up with his hands holding the lighter. Nothing. He drops it slightly, nothing. Then finally, inches above the container, the lighter ignites the vapour. He’s found that small window where the gas will ignite. Neandross points out that the flame never makes its way back into the container of LNG, and only burns when the gas/oxygen mix is ideal. Once it’s not, the fire goes out. “The real purpose of this is just to provide the basic education about LNG, what it is and maybe just as importantly what it’s not,” said Neandross of his natural gas presentations. “There’s a lot of misconception about LNG, which is understandable; we don’t have LNG necessarily in every community these days.”
By Kevin Campbelll
$11.4 BILLION DECISION
he countdown is on for the federal government to decide on whether or not to give the Pacific NorthWest LNG project the green light. On June 27, Pacific NorthWest LNG submitted its final response to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA), which has been accepted as satisfactory. The Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna now has 90 days to decide if she will
give the LNG project the final federal stamp of approval on the $11.4 billion project. Pacific NorthWest LNG announced a positive Final Investment Decision in June 2015, subject to two conditions. The first condition was satisfied on July 21, 2015 when the Project Development Agreement was passed by the province. The final hurdle is McKennaâ€™s decision.
Continued on Page 8
LELU 101 With all the delays, twists and turns surrounding the Pacific Northwest (PNW) LNG proposed natural gas liquefaction and export terminal on Lelu Island, many will need a scorecard just to understand who the players are and how we have come to this pivotal moment in Northwest B.C.’s economic future. As expected with any multi-dimensional, large-scale multi-billion-dollar project, the number of geographical areas, people and habitats affected are numerous. And the responsibility to consult with those affected, both municipalities and First Nations is paramount in ensuring the proponents receive a green light for their investment from the federal cabinet, in this case, an $11.4 billion project off of Port Edward. PNW’s consultation process began many years ago and, while culminating in a draft Environmental Assessment Report in February, is a fluid and ever-changing process that involves stakeholders across B.C. and beyond. LELU ISLAND’S BACKYARD Five Aboriginal groups were identified by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) ‘whose potential or established Aboriginal rights or title could be adversely affected by the project’. Those included the Lax Kw’alaams Band, the Metlakatla First Nation, the Gitxaala Nation, the Kitsumkalum First Nation and the Kitselas First Nation. The Gitga’at First Nation was added in 2013 to that list. After a process that involved phone calls, letters, emails, presentations and discussions on the technical aspects of the project and potential impacts to Aboriginal groups’ interests and rights and title and in-person meetings with all six Nations, CEAA stated in the report that Metlakatla and Lax Kw’alaams “were provided with the opportunity to participate in archaeological surveys and investigative geotechnical programs on Lelu Island, and to tour the project area” and Lax Kw’alaams, Metlakatla, Kitsumkalum, Kitselas and Gitxaala participated and reviewed studies involving tree surveys, marine foreshore surveys, marine bird and bird nesting studies, eelgrass surveys, marine sediment sampling, soil sampling, freshwater streams fish sampling, meteorological data collection, environmental monitoring of drilling programs and more. CONDITIONAL SUPPORT After a review by many First Nations, the work done by hired independent scientists, Metlakatla, Gitxaala, Kitsumkalum, Kitselas and Lax Kw’alaams all signalled their conditional support, with a heavy emphasis on environmental monitoring with regular reports of fish and marine life habitats and much more to be given to them by the proponent and CEAA during the lifetime of the terminal. All five of those bands have been active with PNW in signing Impact Benefit Agreements (an agreement, monetary and otherwise, in outlining land, training, employment, community infrastructure, habitat improvements, revenue sharing and education aspects of the project). “The Metlakatla First Nation has been fully engaged in the
environmental assessment of the Pacific NorthWest LNG project. From our involvement, Metlakatla has submitted clear recommendations [conditions] to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency related to the project. In our opinion, the conditions identify potential impacts and the requirement to mitigate and monitor any work related to the project. Once the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency and the Federal Cabinet render their decision, Metlakatla will further review the decision and conditions and move to monitor the project — if approved — to ensure the regulations are adhered to,” said Shaun Thomas, Metlakatla communications coordinator. GITGA’AT CHALLENGE The Gitga’at First Nation did not participate in the endorsement of the CEAA process and has yet to sign an agreement. Additionally, Gitga’at chief councillor Arnold Clifton wrote in a statement last July, “Anthropological evidence and our Adawx, which are the oral records of the Gitga’at, show that we have fished and hunted in Prince Rupert Harbour and the lower Skeena River since before the European settlers arrived. Prince Rupert Harbour is a large part of our social, cultural and economic life and proposed LNG developments would impact the rights and livelihood of every Gitga’at member.” A legal challenge was launched against PNW last year, establishing the Gitga’at as one of the Tsimshian First Nations deserving of full consultation and associated benefits with the project. The Lax Kw’alaams Band has since refuted this claim and launched their own legal challenge in the Supreme Court of B.C. establishing a very large portion of North Coast land, including many crown lands and Lelu Island as its own, with full rights and title. LAX KW’ALAAMS REVERSAL Since the challenge, Lax Kw’alaams Mayor John Helin wrote a letter of support to federal Minister of Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna in mid-March, reversing the Band’s rejection of the terminal and supporting the project, with conditions that PNW must report its environmental monitoring work to an Environmental Performance Committee and that PNW respond to any enforcement actions that have been recommended by the Environmental Performance Committee. This committee would be made up of the Lax Kw’alaams, CEAA and other federal representatives. TSIMSHIAN ALLIANCE An alliance of Tsimshian First Nations between Metlakatla, Gitxaala, Kitsumkalum, Kitselas and even the Gitga’at (Lax Kw’alaams are not included) called the Tsimshian Environmental Stewardship Authority (TESA) provided much of the First Nations-led environmental groundwork, for four of the five Nations to sign on to the project, with stringent conditions. Continued on Page 9
At a March 1 Prince Rupert and District Chamber of Commerce meeting, Gitxaala Chief Clifford White signalled that while many of TESA’s independently-hired scientists found deficiencies in CEAA’s summary report, none were so catastrophic as to prevent the support of Gitxaala and a few fellow Nations from signalling their conditional support. THE TALLY To date, five of the six identified North Coast First Nations have, in some capacity, shown support or signed agreements with PNW (Metlakatla, Kitsumkalum, Kitselas, Lax Kw’alaams and Gitxaala), while one has yet to do so (Gitga’at). LAX KW’ALAAMS UNREST But hold on. That’s not the end of the story for the Lax Kw’alaams. While Mayor Helin wrote to the federal government in March, there are still those within the Band who disagree with the letter of support and have been making their voice heard by occupying Lelu Island itself. “A RADICAL HANDFUL” “It has been with increasing alarm that we have witnessed the occupation of Lelu Island by a small, radical handful of our community members – particularly when they continue to misrepresent our Tribes, falsely suggest they represent our community, and who continually mislead the public as to their powers and support,” the letter states, signed by 11 Ts’msyen Chiefs, matrons, elders and hereditary leaders of the Nine Tribes of Lax Kw’alaams. The Prince Rupert Port Authority has also told Lelu Island occupiers to halt building structures on the island and may threaten legal action if the work continues. The occupiers have previously stated they have plans for a cultural resource centre and a scientific base camp for researchers in the area. OUTSIDE OF THE NORTH COAST The PNW project affects many First Nation communities outside of Lelu Island and the North Coast where it’s proposed to be situated. The TransCanada Prince Rupert Gas Transmission Project passes through many communities and on the outskirts of even more. A total of 11 First Nations have signed agreements with TransCanada, allowing the natural gas pipeline through their territories. The McLeod Lake Indian Band, Takla Lake First Nation, Doig River First Nations, Halfway River First Nation, Yekooche First Nations, Gitanyow First Nation, Lake Babine Nation, Blueberry River First Nation, Metlakatla, Kitselas and Nisga’a Lisims Government have all signed on to pipeline-specific agreements. Additionally, at least three First Nations submitted public comments to the federal government through the open comment period by CEAA in the spring. So, to reduce the First Nations to simple support or nonsupport until more consultation has taken place, 14 are in favour and four are against as of June 2016. Of course, various factions within each Nation prevents most of them from being whole-
Town of Smithers
hearted endorsements and more Nations than the ones listed here may also stake claims to being impacted by the project. THE MUNICIPALITY FACTOR Municipalities and regional districts across B.C. have also voiced their support for the project. Among the closest geographic municipal jurisdictions, the District of Port Edward has given its full support behind the terminal. Additionally, a revenue-sharing agreement was reached with the district and PNW. “The changes that have been made to the facility have ensured Port Edward will continue to experience a unique quality of life. The terminal is a “game-changing” opportunity for residents and businesses alike in the area and the district is satisfied with PNW’s extensive studies into the effects on fish, specifically salmon. The district also supports CEAA’s draft report, Port Edward officials outlined in a letter approved by Mayor Dave MacDonald and council. The City of Prince Rupert has yet to sign an agreement with PNW, and stated in a submission to CEAA that extensive monitoring and reporting practices need to include the city as well as other authorities. “Currently the City of Prince Rupert is still in negotiations with PNW LNG for an Impact Benefits Agreement and is awaiting results from the CEAA process,” wrote city communications manager Veronika Stewart in late May. The Skeena-Queen Charlotte Regional District (SQCRD) has also yet to support the PNW terminal in any formal manner. Continued on Page 10
Trestle Bridge - One part of the redesign made by PNW LNG in response to public consultation and to safeguard Flora Bank. Outside the immediate area, the City of Terrace, City of Fort St. John, City of Dawson Creek, District of Hudson’s Hope, District of Taylor, District of Chetwynd, District of Tumbler Ridge, Northern Rockies Regional Municipality, Peace River Regional District, District of Mackenzie, District of New Hazelton and City of Prince George have all signed on to either PNW LNG, the Prince Rupert Gas Transmission (PRGT) pipeline, Progress Energy (gas source) or the integrated project. In total, 12 municipalities and one regional district has signalled support. PROVINCIAL BACKING The PNW project also has the full backing of B.C. Premier Christy Clark and the Liberal B.C. government, who have been making their case to Ottawa to seek support for exporting LNG to Asian countries. All NDP MLAs and MPs in Northwest B.C. have rejected the $11.4 billion project. Conversely, Prince George-Peace River-Northern Rockies Conservative MP Bob Zimmer has signalled his support for the project in a statement made in February. “I am pleased to see that CEAA’s draft report concludes that this important project could avoid significant environmental effects. I trust that the Prime Minister and his cabinet will do
the right thing and approve Pacific NorthWest LNG as this project will help dramatically reduce greenhouse gas emissions in China’s industrial sector, making LNG good for British Columbia, Canada and the globe,” Zimmer wrote. THE FINAL TALLY? While many First Nations, municipalities and politicians have signalled their position on the project one way or another, many are still in negotiation with the proponent or government, or are awaiting negotiations. For its part, Pacific NorthWest LNG states that it appreciates all the cooperative work that has been done up to this point. “Pacific NorthWest LNG is proud of the relationships that we have forged with area First Nations and residents throughout northwestern British Columbia over the past four years,” said Spencer Sproule, senior advisor, corporate affairs at PNW. “The feedback and participation of First Nations and residents means a lot to us, evidenced by the numerous changes already incorporated into our project design. As our project progresses, we hope to build on the positive relationships that we have forged in the effort to construct a world-leading LNG facility that everyone in the region can be proud of, and benefit from.”
GREAT FIRST YEAR FOR STEWART WORLD PORT
Stewart World Port humming, break bulk facility handling major offloads
By Rod Link
ot even one year into service, the Stewart World Port dock at Stewart is the scene of a major project featuring the unloading of massive components bound for a wind farm in northeastern B.C. Five ships arrived in spring, each carrying the components for the 61 wind farm’s turbines which were then off-loaded via cranes located on the ships to waiting specialized trucks. The components were then taken to a large laydown area that’s part of the Stewart World Port where they are being been placed on large transports for the journey to the windfarm location outside of Tumbler Ridge. For Stewart World Port’s Brad Moffat, its chief development officer, the project is a perfect example of the capability and ability of the year-round, ice-free port to handle large bulk cargo. “This is a very good port for anybody wanting anything moved into or out of northern B.C., the Yukon or even Alberta,” he said. As for the scope of this particular wind farm project, Moffat describes in the top ten per cent of port activity along the coast. “It’s been a great first year,” Moffat added of the Stewart World Port which opened last September at a capital cost of $70 million. In the shipping world the Stewart World Port, which is a massive dock, is called a break bulk facility, handling goods
“This is a very good port for anybody wanting anything moved into or out of northern B.C.” - Brad Moffat and material that aren’t normally shipped in containers and are not shipped in bulk such as grain. In this case, the components for each of the 61 turbines bound for the Meikle Wind project approximately 30 kilometres from Tumbler Ridge can take up to 15 trucks. Components for two sizes of turbines were offloaded with just over half to be 100 metres high to the generator when assembled and the others being 110 metres high to the generator. The blades of the smaller turbines measure 103 metres in diameter while the larger ones have blades that are 120 metres in diameter. Continued on Page 12
Windfarm project proves Stewart World Port’s versatility
Convoy of trucks heading from Stewart to windfarm near Tumbler Ridge
Stewart World Port used as off-load site for major wind farm project in northeast B.C. An entire turbine, including the tower, electrical portions, blades and nacelle (the housing unit which contains the generator) can weigh more than 450,000 kilograms. Also part of the project are huge cranes needed for installing the turbines once they reach their final destination. These alone can require up to 30 trucks to deliver because of their weight. One of the great benefits of the Stewart World Port, and which has proven its worth here, is the size of its laydown yard where goods and material can be stored before being either transported out to a land destination once unloaded or
gathered together for loaded onto a ship, said Moffat. And he says the Stewart World Port can now use the windfarm project as an example of its versatility. And as for how the port secured the windfarm contract, Moffat put the success down to “blood, sweat and hard work.” “That’s what it is about, hard work. We’ve been moving a lot of product. We’re making some very good connections,” said Moffat. Another example includes bringing in processing equipment for a natural gas plant in northern Alberta. Once placed on large transport trucks in Stewart, it’s a
journey of between three and four days to get to the wind farm location near Tumbler Ridge. The project is owned by Meikle Wind Energy LP which is wholly owned by Pattern Energy Group LP of San Francisco. The Meikle wind farm is planned to go into operation in November, producing enough power for 54,000 homes through a 25-year purchase agreement with BC Hydro. This is Pattern’s first such project in B.C., adding to one wind farm in Manitoba and four in Ontario.
“Blood, sweat and hard work ... That’s what it is about, hard work.” - Brad Moffat 13
INTEREST HEATING UP IN GOLDEN “It’s elephant country ... TRIANGLE we think Iskut is one of those By Xuyun Zeng Seabridge Gold Inc. has announced it will acquire SnipGold Corp. in a $10 million deal. SnipGold’s primary asset is the Iskut Property within the Golden Triangle area near Stewart and Wrangell, Alaska. Seabridge chairman and CEO Rudi Fronk said Seabridge has interest in SnipGold given their experience with their KSM project, located about 30 kilometres away from the Iskut Property. “We see a lot of similarity to what we have at KSM in terms of big bulk mineable deposits,” said Fronk. “And we also see historically at the old Johnny Mountain Mine, at the old Snip mine, there was high grade production at well, and we see that opportunity. “It’s elephant country where you have the potential to find huge mineral systems, and we think Iskut is one of those big systems that we can have a lot of fun with.” Elephant country refers to an area where big clusters of minerals are likely to be, such as in the Golden Triangle of British Columbia, where the Iskut Property is located. “Our focus at SnipGold would be to explore and advance their assets,” said Fronk. “That’s the type of project that will take
big systems we can have a lot of fun with.”
- Rudi Fronk a lot of dollars and time to really sort it out. Junior companies like Snip really, it’s difficult for them to raise the money to do a project like this justice, especially in a tough metal environment where we’ve been in the past five years, where as Seabridge has access to capital and access to other resources to go in and do the project justice.” Related to this boom in interest in that area is Skeena Resources Ltd.’s acquisition of the old Snip mine. Skeena Resources Ltd. entered into an option agreement with Barrick Gold Inc. to acquire the mine in April, chiefly driven by higher gold prices and therefore a lower yield-per-tonne requirement for a viable operation. Fronk also said the paving of the Stewart-Cassiar Highway, or Highway 37, and a new power transmission line alongside the highway also played into their decision.
MEET BRYAN HENRY Hi. I’m Bryan and I am proud to begin a new adventure with Glacier Toyota in the stunning Bulkley Valley. I moved to the region in April 2015 with dreams of purchasing a home and starting a family. Recently engaged, the purchase of a river front home, and being blessed with our first born son in February, I feel life could not hand me any more mo aces! I have a tourism background with 18 winters supervising ski hill operations and 12 seasons of salt water guiding in Haida Gwaii. I am glad to be welcomed into the Glacier Toyota family and look forward to many years of good times, with great people, in this beautiful town of four seasons. Come grab a coffee and let me help you find the right vehicle to get you up the mountain or to the water. Fishing stories are encouraged and will be traded! I look forward to meeting you.
SUPPLY, IS THE ISSUE F
By Vivian Chui
or the fifth summer and counting, Vanderhoof Specialty Wood Products is supplying wood pellets for local homes and beyond. Since the opening of its pellet plant in 2012, the Vanderhoof company reaches B.C. clients as far west as Prince Rupert, north to Dawson Creek, and south to 100 Mile House, as well as exporting to customers in the eastern United States, said VSWP’s general manager Keith Spencer. “All people want to do is to buy a bag of pellets, put it into their stove, and it works,” Spencer said. “If it doesn’t work well, they don’t come back.” The company has benefited from the rising price of wood pellets from year to year — the product’s demand increased, but its supply has not, he explained. At maximum capacity, the plant — with a single pellet press — is currently producing 15,000 tons each year. “We are restricted by the availability of white wood (sawdust and shavings that make up the pellets),” he said. “The market is there, but the white wood isn’t, so you’re restricted to your production.” With seven employees hired from the area for its production,
“The market is there, but the white wood isn’t, so you’re restricted to your production.” - Keith Spencer the plant operates 24 hours a day for five days a week.
“We work hard,” Spencer said. “We talk about the business, the quality of the product, the customer base, what the customer is needing. “The employees understand that part, their responsibility too, and they respond.”
Continued on Page 16
COMMERCIAL PRODUCTION TARGET 2017
ADVANCING CONSTRUCTION OF THE HIGH-GRADE GOLD BRUCEJACK PROJECT IN NORTHERN BC
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Including the workers who operate the company’s manufacturing facility for finger-jointed lumber production, VSWP’s workforce is young, as the company employs mostly first-time workers, Spencer explained. Many start as seasonal employees during the summer, and while some may continue as full-time workers through the winter, others move on to post-secondary education. As a result, though some workers have stayed for over 10 years, the company has a large turnover rate. “Everyone has a starting point,” he said. “We supply that and give people an opportunity to advance themselves for a higher paying job.” Employees undergo safety training with all equipment used, job-shadow with experienced workers, and are then evaluated. “If they have all the safety procedures understood, then they are cut loose to go on their own,” Spencer said. “That’s what we work on everyday — training people.” Originally started in 1991, VSWP became part of the Vanderhoof-based BID Group of Companies in 2009, and owns one of Canada’s 41 pellet plants that produced over three million tons in total each year — as of 2013 according to Statistics Canada. -N2K-
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HELPING TOURISM CREATING JOBS
New Burns Lake method could be a money-maker, job-creator
By Flavio Nienow
uy Epkens-Shaffer, president of the Burns Lake Mountain Biking Association, wants the trails on of Boer Mountain in Burns Lake cleaned up from blow down debris. Epkens-Shaffer is one of many people in Burns Lake who think that blowdown and fallen dead trees on local trails have a negative impact on tourism. Burns Lake resident Klaus Posselt, owner of the Tathsa Group, says the he has a way of addressing the issue of fallen dead trees on trails differently. He suggests the use of a harvester and forwarder, a $1 million piece of equipment he already owns. Posselt said this method would not only be more effective, but that it would also generate money. Most of the wood removed from the trails is not utilized. Chunks of trees are left behind for firewood while branches and treetops are burned. “[This way] wood can be utilized and turned into jobs,” he said. Posselt said he’s been trying to implement this method in the Burns Lake area for several years. According to Greig Bethel, Public Affairs Officer for the Ministry of Forests, Lands and Natural Resource Operations, the ministry is currently considering the use of forwarders in the Burns Lake area. Bethel agrees that forwarders can be effective to clear trails when salvaging timber is the primary goal.
This harvester and forwarder, a $1 million piece of equipment, could create more jobs and address the issue of fallen dead trees with little impact or damage to existing trails. “The ministry is in the process of working on site selection that would support operations that use forwarders,” he said. Bethel added that fallen trees are a common occurrence across the province during winter, especially in mountain pine beetle-affected areas such as Burns Lake.
ANYBODY WANT TO
MAKE SOME ENERGY? T
By Flavio Nienow
he Lake Babine Nation (LBN) is seeking for partnerships to expand operations of its biomass plant, which is expected to be on the grid in 2017. Although the plan is for the biomass plant to burn wood chips from LBN communities such as Fort Babine and Tachet, project manager Bernard Patrick said there’s opportunity to utilize wood waste from other areas of the regional district and to provide energy to different communities. Patrick said a feasibility study has already been conducted and that it would be possible for LBN to supply energy to buildings such as hospitals and nursing homes in nearby communities such as Burns Lake. The first phase of the project, which included a feasibility study, engineering design and crew training, has already concluded. During Phase 1, eight locals received on-thejob training through the government-funded job creation partnership project. “The job creation partnership project is a first for our First Nation and the benefits coming from this have already impacted the communities in a positive way,” said Patrick. “It has brought back hope that both the communities of Tachet and Fort Babine
Depot and Parts
“It has brought back hope that both the communities of Tachet and Fort Babine can become self-sustaining.” - Bernard Patrick can become self-sustaining and unified and the workers are getting fantastic job experience.” As part of the program, participants built 67 firewood storage sheds for LBN in Tachet and Fort Babine, as well as two timber bridges. The firewood sheds were intended to reduce power consumption in those communities. Continued on Page 19
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Wood waste biomass could be the ticket to assisting Tachet and Fort Babine First Nations become self-sustainable.
“It’s a win for everyone when eight people gain access to work experience in forestry practices that will help an entire First Nations community become energy self-sufficient,” said Nechako Lakes MLA John Rustad. “The Lake Babine Nation and its residents will benefit from this job creation partnership for years to come.” Lake Babine Nation is now waiting for funding from different agencies to start Phase 2 of the construction project, which involves the construction of an underground distribution system in Fort Babine. Phase 3 of the construction project, which is expected to wrap up in 2017, will see the construction of an energy centre in Woyenee, as well as a business set-up and operation training. Once completed, the biomass plant is expected to create five full-time and eight part-time permanent jobs. According to Patrick, other benefits from this project include the reduction of LBN’s carbon footprint, revenue from the sale of heat and electricity and cost-efficient heating. The province has provided $40,000 to LBN for a feasibility study in 2013, and more than $110,000 for the job creation
“It’s a win for everyone when eight people gain access to work experience that will help an entire First Nations community ...” - John Rustad partnership project. The provincial government estimates Northern B.C. has the largest availability of wood biomass in the country, with approximately 3.1 million cubic metres of potential forest tenure available for use as biomass for energy.
VANDERHOOF and DISTRICTS CO-OPERATIVE ASSOCIATION 15 Cardlock Locations: Fort St. James To Quesnel, Terrace To Valemount. Fuel Tanks Sales & Rentals, Bulk Fuel and Oil Deliveries: Vanderhoof Toll Free: 1-888-545-2667, Quesnel: 1-888-992-2667, Prince George: 1-866-309-2667 Houston: 1-800-848-6347, Terrace: 250-635-9595
ANOTHER RECORD YEAR, FOR PORT OF PRINCE RUPERT By Shannon Lough
he Prince Rupert Port Authority (PRPA) highlighted strengthened relationships with local stakeholders while presenting the successes of its diversified growth strategy in 2015. Details of the PRPA’s activities and financial results were discussed during its Annual Public Meeting, held at the Crest Hotel in Prince Rupert. A total of 19.6 million tonnes were processed by the port’s terminal operators in 2015, representing a decrease of 5.6 per cent from the 20.7 million tonnes shipped in 2014. Despite a decrease in total volume through the port, volumes of grains and biofuel remained strong, and intermodal cargo through Fairview Container Terminal saw a 26 per cent annual increase for a record total of 776,412 TEUs. The port also stated that 2015 was a strong year for PRPA’s finances, with a record total revenue of $53 million and total assets surpassing $200 million. “In addition to increasing the competitiveness of our Canadian gateway, we are particularly proud of the investment of time and resources into our partnerships with the organizations that keep goods moving safely and efficiently through the Port of Prince Rupert,” said Bud Smith, chair of PRPA’s board of directors. “Our success is built not only on the relationships we foster with customers and supply chain partners, but also on our ability to share values and benefits with the governments and residents of the communities
“In 2015, we were able to make significant investments in infrastructure that expand our capacity for cargo ...”
- Don Krusel
where we operate.” Don Krusel, CEO and president of the Port of Prince Rupert said despite market pressures, last year, the port continued to position itself as a responsible global player. “In a world of fluctuating commodity prices, safely navigating the turbulent waters of the trade and transportation sector is critical to our success,” Krusel said. “In 2015 we were able to make significant investments in infrastructure that expand our capacity for cargo, as well as implementing safeguards that protect this trade and the natural resources that we steward on British Columbia’s north coast.”
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RECEIVES BIG BOOST Lax Kw’alaams receives largest community investment from the port to date
By Shannon Lough
esidents in the remote Lax Kw’alaams community are benefiting from a $539,400 investment from the Port of Prince Rupert’s Community Investment Fund. The announcement stated that this the Port’s largest Community Investment Fund contribution to date. The funds went into two projects to provide recreational activities for the youth and to enhance digital connectivity for the municipality. The Coast Tsimshian Academy and recreation centre received equipment and programming through the Outdoor Leadership Adventure Program. Activities such as biking, kayaking and camping are available for families who want to organize an excursion independently or for a larger group. The second initiative, the Smart Community infrastructure project, has aimed to modernize the community’s information technology system through enhanced management of its computer systems. “As a remote community without road access, communication infrastructure is so important to our business, education, safety and health services,” said Lax Kw’alaams Mayor John Helin. “Our IT systems have not been upgraded for 20 years, so improved digital connections will have tremendous impact on each and every member of our community. Likewise, new recreational equipment and programs will allow children and adults to access and explore a greater extent of our pristine territory.” The technology system upgrade offers greater access to online education and programs for members of the community. The computer systems are equipped with software and security to
meet global standards for municipal administration and business communication. The community now has new phone, surveillance and alarm systems to improve the digital security of the IT network. “These projects are so much more than just wiring, hardware and equipment,” said Don Krusel, president and CEO of the Port of Prince Rupert. “The communications infrastructure we’re investing in will improve the quality of life by creating new jobs in the community and allowing Lax Kw’alaams to share its unique cultural heritage in new ways. And we’re thrilled to hear stories about the outdoor adventures their children are embarking on with the new recreation programs and equipment available in the community.” The Outdoor Leadership Adventure Program has been integrated over the past two years. Students have trained through the Coast Tsimshian Academy and all residents can benefit from the courses offered in kayaking and wilderness excursions. School staff members have also had the opportunity to become certified to instruct and lead different recreation activities, where they can also learn practical skills and gain leadership and mentorship opportunities. “The children of our community are already reaping the benefits of this program, and it’s immediately apparent when you step foot in our school,” said Kelly Rambeau, Principal of the Coast Tsimshian Academy. “We’re grateful for the support we’ve received from the Port of Prince Rupert and the investments they are making in the future of our community.”
Career Opportunities •
TSIMSHIAN ENVIRONMENTAL STEWARDSHIP AUTHORITY General Manager The General Manager working under the Tsimshian Environmental Stewardship Authority (TESA) Management and Governance Committees will be responsible for coordinating five First Nations to achieve TESA’s mandate. The mandate is to address responsible industrial development on the north coast of British Columbia and inland portion of member Nation’s territories in a manner that protects the environment and communities. This work will be completed considering stewardship, sustainability, and environmental integrity. The Manager will have strong skills in promoting teamwork and communication to create a strong authority to build on TESA’s mandate. Work completed will be based in sound science and management on a range of topics including: cumulative effects, multiple stakeholders, and environmental impact management. MAIN DUTIES AND RESPONSIBILITIES • Lobby, advocate and negotiate for systems, structures and processes to advance TESA Mandate; • Engage internally and externally to develop, gather and disseminate accurate and timely information; • Align our efforts and collaborate with others to enhance environmental integrity; and, • Design and deliver environmental programs, services and initiatives that are founded upon the Tsimshian Worldview and our common environmental values; and • Other related duties as assigned. EDUCATION AND EXPERIENCE • Completion of a university degree in a related field (public administration, natural resources management, land management, First Nations studies), or equivalent combination of education and experience • Minimum 7 to 10 years of work experience in the natural resources and/or lands management sector. Compensation will be negotiated with the successful candidate based on qualifications. The position is open until filled. Please send cover letter and resume to the attention of Shannon Riehl at: Tsimshian Environmental Stewardship Authority C/O North Coast-Skeena First Nations Stewardship Society Suite 363-309 2nd Avenue West, Prince Rupert BC V8J 3T1 Fax: 250-624-8615 E-mail: firstname.lastname@example.org Qualified First Nation candidates are encouraged to apply. TESA thanks all interested applicants but only those selected for an interview will be contacted. A full job description is available at: www.northcoastskeenafirstnations.ca
Vice President Human Resources & Communications Northern Savings Credit Union is seeking a Vice President Human Resources & Communications to provide leadership in developing a culture of engagement and accountability to our members, employees and communities in support of our vision, “Neighbours helping neighbours to build sustainable communities”. The VP HR&C will lead the delivery of programs to enable staff to deliver quality service to members, work effectively as a team, and make critical decisions. Additionally, this position provides leadership in the development of Northern Savings’ brand, internally and externally. Take up the opportunity to help shape and grow Northern Savings Credit Union by fostering a culture of service excellence. For more information about Northern Savings Credit Union, visit www.northsave.com For more about the this opportunity and to apply, visit: www.bookerandassociates.com/jobs
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Career Opportunities •
COMMUNITY HEALTH/HOME COMMUNITY CARE Registered NURSE
Mental Wellness & Substance Use Clinician (Masters)
Kitselas First Nations is looking for a highly motivated FULL time Registered Nurse to join their Health Team. The objective is to deliver and support Care Aid in provision of hands on Community Health and Home Care Nursing Services to Kitselas community members. Qualifications: • Registration with the College of Registered Nurses of BC • Current CPR • Up to date immunizations/TB Screening • Experience with supervision of health staff an asset • Experience in First Nations Community Health Care Services preferred • BCCDC Immunization Certification (or willingness to obtain) Specific Skills or Training • Knowledge of Social Determinants of Health and effects • Excellent assessment, documentation and problem solving skills • Knowledge of working with clients facing multiple barriers to health and well-being • Working knowledge of scope of practice, clinical guidance and direction Other: • Able to recognize and provide support/resources in potential practice conflicts • Excellent oral and written communication skills • Willing to gain additional certification, education and skills as required • Vulnerable Sector Check – Criminal Records Check mandatory • Reliable transportation and Class 5 Driver’s License Salary A competitive salary and benefits package is offered. Further information can be obtained from Director of Health email@example.com Interested applicants should apply at their earliest convenience with a resume and cover letter to the attention of the Director of Finance & HR. Please reference “COMMUNITY HEALTH NURSE - RN” and indicate clearly in your cover letter how your experience and qualifications meet the requirements of the position.
Bring your passion of supporting and working in a community outreach setting where you can become a valuable partner with the North Secwepemc communities.
Deadline: OPEN UNTIL FILLED Please submit Resume with Cover Letter and names of Previous Supervisors for reference to: Teri Muldon: 2225 Gitaus, Terrace, BC V8G 0A9 firstname.lastname@example.org Tel: 250-635-5084 or Fax: 250-635-5335
Three Corners Health Services Society, in partnership with Canim Lake, Canoe Creek, Dog Creek, Soda Creek, Williams Lake, and Akali Lake is looking for Mental Wellness Clinician who understands holistic health including all aspects of the mental, physical, emotional, and spiritual quadrants. Qualicifcations: The successful applicant must have knowledge of First Nations peoples within the Interior Health region as well as a good understanding of colonization both past and present. The individual will practice from a Trauma-Informed and culturally safe paradigm. Flexibility with work hours is required, as occasionally weekends or evenings may be needed. We are seeking a candidate with: • Past and/or current counsellings experience within a First Nations context • Group facilitation experience in both traditional First Nations approaches and mainstream approaches • General competency in concurrent disorders • Excellent communication skills and cross cultural communication experience • Two years’ recent related experience in a mental health and substance use environment or an equivalent combination of eduction, training and experience • Current valid B.C. driver’s license and reliable vehicle • Masters degree from an accredited university in an Allied Health, Behavioural, To apply please email your resume to:toLori or Social Science field relevant theSellars, positionExecutive Director Fax: 250-398-9824 Email: email@example.com • Ability to complete successful advanced criminal record check
For detailed information please visit www.threecornershealth.org Preferences will be given to qualified applicants of Aboriginal ancestry per Canada’s Closing Date: Posted until filled Human Right Act and Legislation surrounding employment equity. To apply please email your resume to: Lori Sellars, Executive Director Fax: 250-398-9824 Email: firstname.lastname@example.org Closing Date: Posted until filled
GITXSAN HEALTH EMPLOYMENT OPPORTUNITIES Casual Personal Care Aide
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Closing Date: June 29, 2016 Start Date: ASAP
Casual Licensed Practical Nurse
Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Casual Registered Nurse
Wage Rate: As Per BCNU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP
Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP
Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP
Casual Patient Travel Clerk
Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP
Closing Date: June 29, 2016
Wage Rate: As Per HEU Collective Agreement
Hours Of Work: Casual
Start Date: ASAP
Qualified applicants are invited to contact: Jennifer Sampare, Executive Assistant Mailto: email@example.com for a copy of full position outline/responsibilities. Only those candidates selected for an interview will be contacted. Please submit a covering letter outlining how you meet the requirements of the position and your resume to: ATTENTION: Executive Health Director, GITXSAN HEALTH SOCIETY P.O. BOX 223, HAZELTON, B.C., V0J 1Y0 CONFIDENTIAL FAX: 250-842-5587 EMAIL: firstname.lastname@example.org
MAKING A SAFE PORT
EVEN SAFER. In a port with a reputation as one of the world's most accessible harbours, local marine agencies combine talent and technology to keep ships and cargoes safe. For Harbour Master's Office staff like Bernie, extraordinary responsibility is all in a day's work. Watch Bernie's part of the story at rupertport.com.