Inverness Mine Remediation

Department of Transportation and Public Works (to Oct. 23 2007)

September 19, 2002 4:00 PM

The provincial government will invest up to $4 million next year
in a project to clean up contamination from an abandoned coal
mine in Inverness County.

Tourism and Culture Minister Rodney MacDonald made the
announcement today, Sept. 19, on behalf of Ron Russell, Minister
of Transportation and Public Works, at the Inverness Fire Hall.

The cleanup is required before any potential development can
occur on the 60-hectare site, just west of Route 19, near the
town of Inverness.

"This is a necessary step to minimize any current or future
environmental risks," said Mr. MacDonald. "It's the right thing
to do and an important step toward bringing new opportunities to
this region of Cape Breton. The work, to be done next year,
underscores our commitment to support economic development and
local prosperity, while observing all proper environmental
safeguards."

A coal mine operated on the site from the 1860s to the 1960s. The
land has been vacant since then. Studies, however, indicated that
waste rock at the site has produced acid over the years, covering
at least 25 per cent of the site. Consultant CBCL Limited was
hired by the province in June to complete a comprehensive site
analysis and environmental management plan.

"It makes a lot more sense to tackle the problem now and not
later," said Mr. MacDonald. "Acting now is in the taxpayers' best
interest, since delays could lead to higher costs and raise
liability issues. Our plan will bring the site back to a
condition roughly similar to what would have existed before its
use as a coal mine."

To ensure provincial control and the safety of the public and
contractors, the remediation program will be managed by the
Department of Transportation and Public Works. The project is
expected to begin next spring and will take about six months to
complete.


FOR BROADCAST USE:

     The province announced today, September 19th, it will clean

up an abandoned coal mine in Inverness County.

     The mine operated off and on for about a century until the

1960s.

     Environmental studies done by the province show there is

contamination that could hinder future economic development

projects.

     The remediation will start next spring. It's expected to

last six months, at a cost of up to four million dollars.

-30-

Contact: Richard Perry
         Transportation and Public Works
         902-424-8978
         E-mail: perryrg@gov.ns.ca

cb             September 19, 2002      5:57 P.M.