North Island mineral data collection project boosted by $930,000 in grants

New regional information will help attract mineral exploration interest and investment

Mineral exploration got a $930,000 boost from the Island Economic Trust (ICET) and Geoscience BC, today.

Geoscience BC and the ICET announced funding of the Northern Vancouver Island (NVI) Exploration Geoscience Project, today. Geoscience BC’s Board has approved $530,000 for project activities, which is being matched by $400,000 from ICET, for a total project budget of $930,000. In addition, the Ministry of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation has provided support for stakeholder engagement in the project development phase, through the Campbell River Regional Economic Pilot initiative.

“This project was a definite priority coming out of the recent Regional Economic Investment Pilot in Campbell River,” said Pat Bell, B.C. Minister of Jobs, Tourism and Innovation. “It’s easy to see why because mining presents tremendous opportunity for job creation in B.C. and for the north Vancouver Island. The data being collected is essential to moving forward and delivering on the potential for job creation in the region.”

The NVI Exploration Geoscience Project will generate new geoscience data for northern Vancouver Island, near the communities of Campbell River, Port Hardy, Port McNeill, Alert Bay, Port Alice and Zeballos. This new regional information will help attract mineral exploration interest and investment, increase the understanding of the mineral potential, and provide local First Nations and communities with more information on the geology of the region.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors of the Island Coastal Economic Trust, I am pleased to participate in the announcement for this project, which is the Trust’s first opportunity in the mining sector,” said Camela Tang, ICET Vice Chair. “This type of project continues the Trust’s tradition of funding projects in the region that lead to long term employment and complements many other initiatives funded by ICET in the north Island such as the North Coast Trail at Cape Scott, the Quatse Salmon Interpretive Centre in Port Hardy, the harbour expansions in Port McNeill, Port Hardy and Coal Harbour, the airport expansion in Campbell River and many more economic investments in the North Island.”

The project activities will include an airborne magnetic survey and a stream sediment geochemical sampling and analysis program.  Both of these programs will commence this summer, with data collection taking place over the summer and fall.  Project results are expected to be released in early 2013.  In addition, the project will support two community awareness sessions on geoscience, mineral exploration and mining.