• The proposed Sisson Tungsten/Molybdenum/Copper mine near Stanley, New Brunswick, has the potential to create significant negative impact on, and catastrophic risk for:

    • Atlantic salmon habitat vulnerable to changes in the hydrologic regime and heavy metal deposition.

    • The Nashwaak Watershed, a valuable economic and ecological resource, currently one of the post pristine watersheds in New Brunswick.

    • Wetland habitats.

    • Extensive areas of economically valuable hardwood and mixedwood Acadian Forest, a forest type under stress.

    • Human health and safety in the Nashwaak Watershed, and in the open-pit itself, due to an unacceptable level of risk of failure of the extensive and high tailing dams.

    • Human and ecological health due to air emissions of dust with elevated levels of arsenic and lead in an extensive area of the projected dust plume of this mine.

    Take action and intervene on the Environmental  Assessment process and demand the greatest assessment and protection here.

    Please feel free to copy/adapt the materials in your letters to government.

    Deadline for this action alert: October 3, 2011.

  • FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
    Thursday, Dec. 3, 2015

    FREDERICTON —
     Stephanie Merrill, Director of Freshwater Protection with the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, issued the following statement in response to the Department of Environment’s approval of the Sisson Mine Environmental Impact Assessment:

    “I’m surprised by today’s announcement considering it’s been made in a vacuum. Final approval of this project is a joint process between the provincial and federal government — but we’re still waiting on the review from the feds, and there are outstanding parts of that review that we’re committed to participating in.

    The province also has not released the summary of the Independent Review Panel to the public, as it’s required to do by law. The summary needs to be released right away for the sake of transparency, otherwise our government is playing fast and loose with the rules that let people participate in this process.

    The company behind the mine proposal, Sisson Mines Ltd, is still far from securing the financing needed to move forward with the project, and no public financing accounts have been released. At best, today’s announcement is a signal that the province is open to business, but in reality, you can put lipstick on a pig, but it’s still a pig.

    The conditions of approval are vague when it comes to critical issues like emergency planning, the security of the tailings dam, and liability. Most striking, we’re letting the fox guard the henhouse by leaving the responsibility to protect the Nashwaak River and watershed directly in the hands of the company. Even the International Council on Mining —  composed of the world’s largest companies — said yesterday that the control standards for tailing facilities are inadequate and the council would be reviewing and revising its standards.

    We’ve seen at least three major tailings disasters in the past year and a half — at Mount Polley in B.C., the Buenavista del Cobre mine in Mexico, and most recently in Brazil,  where 16 people died and the Brazilian government announced yesterday a $5.2 (billion) USD billion lawsuit against the company responsible.

    First and foremost at this point, we call on the province to release the summary report of the Independent Review Panel so New Brunswickers know what the experts in the scientific community have to say about this project proposal.”
    -30-

    For more information or to arrange an interview, contact:

    Jon MacNeill, Conservation Council of New Brunswick: 458-8747 | 261-1353 |jon.macneill@conservationcouncil.ca
  • The Conservation Council’s Executive Director, Lois Corbett, is calling for caution and transparency after the federal government gave its approval of the proposed open-pit Sisson Mine near Stanley.

    Corbett told CBC Radio’s Information Morning Fredericton on Monday, June 26 that many details surrounding the project — such as the specific design of the tailings dam needed to protect the Nashwaak watershed and surrounding communities from toxic mine waste, or who would pay for the costs of replacing drinking water and repairing stream habitat in the event of a leak or breach like we saw at Mt. Polley, B.C. — have yet to be made public.

    Northcliff Resources, the company behind the Sisson project, was given 40 conditions to meet during the provincial environmental assessment process last year. Corbett said there was talk at Friday’s announcement that the company had met all the conditions, but “I’ve yet to see any evidence of that. There’s not a spot on the website where you can go and download a detailed tailings dam design, for example.

    “Perhaps the company has provided some material, so someone could check a box on a long list of conditions. I haven’t seen any evidence of that, and I would hope the government would let us all see soon, sooner as opposed to later,” she said.

    Listen to the full interview with host Terry Seguin here.

    For more coverage of CCNB on the Sisson Mine project, check out:

    • Corbett called for greater transparency from the provincial government in this CBC article published Friday, 23, saying “this project is a long way from being complete — a piece of paper from a federal minister saying approval is granted, with no details, doesn’t give me much confidence.”
    • The New Brunswick Telegraph-Journal reported on concerns raised by Corbett and Taymouth Environmental Action’s Jim Emberger about the risks to drinking water, river habitat, and nearby communities.
    • Corbett questioned the logic behind risking drinking water for a limited number of unsustainable jobs in this Canadian Press story, saying “I remain to be convinced that those jobs created over the life of the project are equal in weight to the risk to the water.” The story was shared by Global News, CTV, the Globe & Mail, The Financial Post, Metro News, Nanaimo News, the Red Deer Advocate,105.3 the Fox, 104.9 and K93.
    • Corbett commented on the environmental risks of the project in stories by L’Acadie Nouvelle and L’actualite.
    For more information on the Conservation Council’s concerns about the Sisson Mine, see:

 © 2018 NBEN / RENB