Taseko Mines Limited application to appeal the rejection of the proposed New Prosperity Mine near Teztan Biny (Fish Lake) has been denied (Photo submitted)

Canada’s top court dismisses company’s appeal on rejection of northern B.C. mining project

Tsilhqot’in Nation says it is celebrating the decision

Canada’s top court will not be hearing Taseko’s Mines Limited application to appeal a prior rejection of the proposed New Prosperity Mine southwest of Williams Lake.

Taseko’s application was dismissed by the Supreme Court of Canada on Thursday (May 14), nearly five months after it was filed.

The Tsilhqot’in Nation has refused to give consent to the project, arguing the proposed open pit gold and copper mine threatens a sacred area of profound cultural importance to them.

READ MORE: BC Supreme Court grants Tsilhqot’in injunction to stop exploratory drilling by Taseko

“This decision has been a long time coming,” Tsilhqot’in Chief Joe Alphonse said in a statement Thursday.

“We are celebrating the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision today, and taking the time to reflect on the immense sacrifices made by our communities and members to finally have their voices heard and respected.”

A 2013 environmental assessment report by an independent federal panel of experts concluded New Prosperity would have significant impacts on water quality, fisheries, and Tsilhqot’in cultural heritage, rights, and traditional practises.

Those conclusions were accepted by the federal government, which rejected the project in February 2014.

READ MORE: Taseko, Tsilhqot’in Nation and Province attempt to resolve mine dispute

Legal challenges in regards to the decisions were filed by Taseko and were dismissed in December 2017. Appeals were dismissed by the Federal Court of Appeal in December 2019.

Taseko vice president of corporate affairs, Brian Battison said the company has no comment on the decision at this time.

This latest court decision is the latest in a series of court battles between the Tsilhqot’in Nation and TML.

Chief Russell Myers Ross noted they feel relieved about the decision.

“The last 30 years [have] been challenging and onerous on our communities and people,” he said in a statement. “Today’s decision is another step in our journey to reimagine a more respectful relationship with the Crown, grounded in recognition of our Aboriginal Rights and Title.”


Do you have a comment about this story? email:
rebecca.dyok@wltribune.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

miningTsilhqot’inWilliams Lake

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Salmon closures announced for Skeena and Nass watersheds

DFO notice expands on May 21 chinook ban throughout Skeena watershed

New traffic lanes for Six Mile west of Burns Lake coming soon

Construction to begin on lane extension and traffic improvement

Canfor mill remains closed

And company to shut Isle Pierre operation permanently

Museum society to open public art gallery in Burns Lake

Artists and residents who have been lobbying for additional exhibition space in… Continue reading

Burns Lake Public Library receives funding for restart

The library plans to open soon with stricter restrictions

B.C. legislature coming back June 22 as COVID-19 emergency hits record

Pandemic restrictions now longer than 2017 wildfire emergency

DFO allowing at-sea observers again if safe work procedures in place

May 15 fishery notice lays out conditions for allowing at-sea observers onboard amid COVID-19

B.C.’s essential grocery, hardware store employees should get pandemic pay: retail group

Only B.C.’s social, health and corrections workers are eligible for top-ups

Edmonton, Vancouver and Toronto vying to be NHL hubs, but there’s a catch

The NHL unveiled a return-to-play plan that would feature 24 teams

Introducing the West Coast Traveller: A voyage of the mind

Top armchair travel content for Alaska, Yukon, BC, Alberta, Washington, Oregon and California!

B.C. sees 9 new COVID-19 cases, one death as officials watch for new cases amid Phase Two

Number of confirmed active cases is at 244, with 37 people in hospital

Nanaimo senior clocked going 50 km/hr over limit says her SUV shouldn’t be impounded

RCMP say they can’t exercise discretion when it comes to excessive speeding tickets

Illicit-drug deaths up in B.C. and remain highest in Canada: chief coroner

More than 4,700 people have died of overdoses since B.C. declared a public health emergency in early 2016

CMHC sees declines in home prices, sales, starts that will linger to end of 2022

CMHC said average housing prices could fall anywhere from nine to 18 per cent in its forecast

Most Read