Lethbridge City Council to write letter outlining proposed coal mine concerns
Lethbridge City Hall. Photo credit to MyLethbridgeNow.com (Pat Siedlecki)
Lethbridge City Council will be writing a letter to the province outlining a number of concerns regarding a proposed coal mining project in the Crowsnest Pass.
If approved following public consultations, the Grassy Mountain Project, located about 7 km north of Blairmore, would produce roughly 4.5-million tonnes of clean coal per year, over a life span of 25 years.
Councillor Belinda Crowson, who brought forward the idea for the letter along with Councillor Rob Miyashiro, says the purpose is not about advocating for or against the mining project.
She says “it’s about expressing our concerns and asking that our concerns be considered in any decision being made. And our major concerns are primarily the water supply as this would affect the entire headwaters region of the Oldman River and the reputation of our agrifood industry and how it would affect our irrigation water.”
Crowson adds that selenium released into the Oldman River from the mining operation cannot be filtered out at the water treatment plant meaning drinking water for Lethbridge and surrounding communities could become contaminated within a decade.
City Council unanimously voted in favour Monday of sending a letter of concern to Minister of Environment and Parks Jason Nixon, Premier Jason Kenney and Lethbridge East MLA Nathan Neudorf.