BCEAO issues Section 10 Order & requests streamlined EA process
Issued Capital: 121,276,976
LONDON, ON, April 19, 2013 /CNW/ - Fortune Minerals Limited (TSX: FT) (OTCQX: FTMDF) ("Fortune" or the "Company") ( www.fortuneminerals.com) and POSCO Canada Ltd. ("POSCAN") are pleased to announce that their Arctos Anthracite Joint Venture ("AAJV") has submitted a revised Project Description for the Arctos Anthracite Project to the British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office ("BCEAO") and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency ("CEAA"). This revised Project Description is based on the current development plan that includes extending the Dease Lake railway line in northwest British Columbia ("BC"), 150 km to the proposed mine along the existing railway roadbed. The mine plan has also been amended to reflect a three million tonne per annum production rate and to include modifications to reduce environmental impacts. The CEAA has accepted the Project Description and is seeking public comment on the environmental assessment ("EA") process.
The BCEAO has issued a Section 10 order that determines that the project is reviewable and requires an EA to proceed. The BCEAO has also submitted a request to the CEAA for "substitution", which would streamline the EA process under a single regulatory body in BC, making the EA more efficient with the elimination of unnecessary duplication. A decision on substitution is expected from the CEAA by late May. If the request is approved by the federal Minister of Environment, the province would commit to fulfill the conditions for substitution which includes undertaking procedural delegation of aboriginal consultation for the project.Dr. Richard Schryer, Fortune's Director of Regulatory and Environmental Affairs, commented, "substitution of the federal EA process enables cooperation between jurisdictions in the delivery of timely, high quality EAs to achieve the objective of a 'one project-one assessment' approach". The AAJV had already been in the EA process for a previous development plan and most of the environmental baseline information for the mine site has already been collected. The AAJV has been conducting significant additional environmental baseline studies for the proposed railway extension and to address gaps and update the mine baseline data to support permitting and detailed engineering designs. The AAJV is also targeting submission of its draft Application Information Requirements ("dAIR") or "Terms of Reference" in May. The final EA report is expected to be filed in early 2014 to initiate the review process.