Polarities by Celine Duhamel, Director C.M.A.
By Celine Duhamel
On our last holiday away from the snow I found myself at a birthday party being introduced as a prospector.
Right away a fellow next to me admitted to having a claim and with a smile said he was protecting it from being mined. He also continued on about how great it was for camping.
I thought to myself here we go again. He’s obviously putting me on the wrong end of the debate over the environment vs mining issue and trying to portray himself as its savior.
So I replied that yes in the past there have been miners that left messes but that now we are held accountable for what we do by a lot of government regulations which require reclamation of disturbed ground and that things have changed from what they used to be in the “old days.”
He then proceeded to tell me about someone he knew who dredged. I replied that I knew of only a couple of places in B.C. where it was still allowed and they were not where he mentioned. I asked if this fellow had a free miner’s license. He said yes but later remarked that he doubted it.
He was still interested in dredging so I told him that for us we could not mine within 10 metres of the flood plain of a creek and that in any case there should not be any visible sediment entering the stream. He was surprised by this information.
So here you have it folks right from the trenches. A person with a free miner’s license and a claim but still ignorant of mining regulations and on his high horse spouting off negative misinformation on mining for all who’ll listen. I would bet money that he wears precious metal jewelry, owns a cell phone, a computer (with gold components) and perhaps even some gold crowns.
Like most placer miners, I realize that the environment is in distress and I like to think that I’m doing my part for the betterment of the ecology. Similarly we share the enjoyment of nature; but what I am concerned with is how miners are perceived by the general public. It is not the first time I have come across “nuisance stakers”, and there is no sense ranting and raving to them. I am hoping that in the future we can inspire trust by the way we do our mining.
Join the C.M.A. if you find that these principles fit your own. The advancement of our association does not rely on any one person but on all of its members. There is a need for a place where we can voice our opinions and perceptions to become a unified force in today’s society.
Thanks for listening.
Celine Duhamel, Director C.M.A.