By Kristian Secher
A group of Tahltan Nation elders have blocked entry to Imperial Metals’ Red Chris mine near Iskut in northern British Columbia in response to a serious mining waste spill at the company’s Mount Polley mine.
Red Chris mine, a $500 million dollar copper-gold mine scheduled to open later this year, will join three active mining operations owned by Imperial Metals in B.C.
The elders, who stand under the name Klabona Keepers, sent out a notice earlier today announcing they would blockade the mine.
“In response to the Mount Polley mine tailings disaster and our serious concerns over the pending Imperial Metals Red Chris mine, the Klabona Keepers from the Tahltan Nation will blockade the Red Chris property Friday August 8, 2014 at 1 p.m.,” read the notice.
It’s not the first time Klabona Keepers have protested industrial development on Tahltan land; in 2006 they blocked development at Red Chris and the year after they successfully filed an injunction against construction of a road through their traditional territory.
The Keepers state on their website they are not opposed to economic development on their land so long their traditions and laws are obliged. So far Imperial Metals has not received endorsement by the First Nation.
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