But as the company points out, reclamation isn’t something that only starts after a mine is decommissioned. The company has already undertaken replanting of an area where waste rock was dumped over the years.
“It’s a part of mine operations,” said Taseko president Stuart McDonald. “It doesn’t only happen at closure. We’ve got, in the last six years, 107 hectares of land …reclaimed through replanting, encouraging regrowth.”
Most of that reclamation has been in the form of replatning over large piles of waste rock. Much of the replanting work has been done in cooperation with local First Nations, notably the Xat’sull.
“They actually do a lot of the reclamation in terms of the tree-planting and ground cover replacement,” McDonald said.
Taseko has also been working with First Nations on a Fraser River salmon sampling project, and employing graduate students from Simon Fraser University and BC Institute of Technology (BCIT) to do research on encouraging natural regrowth of ground cover.
Taseko’s work on reclamation was recently recognized by the BC Technical and Research Committee on Reclamation with the Jake McDonald award for Metal Mine Reclamation.
(This article first appeared in Business in Vancouver)