There will be no environmental assessment required as part of the application process for the proposed new quarry on Sheridan Hill.
Pitt Meadows Mayor John Becker said the Ministry of Environment has refused to order an environmental assessment. That would be the most rigorous process to determine the impacts of the proposed quarry.
“I’m disappointed in the result,” said Becker. “And I’m not happy with the process.”
Pitt Meadows council wrote the ministry requesting a full environmental assessment for the quarry on the basis that the proposed extraction volume of 240,000 tonnes per year was chosen in order to avoid the mandatory requirement for an environmental assessment at 250,000 tonnes per year.
Becker said the Ministry of Mines will still consider environmental impacts as part of a development review committee process.
Becker’s understanding of that process is for the Ministry of Mines to strike a committee, which would include representation from council, Katzie First Nation and members of the public. All three of those groups have stated opposition to the quarry proposal.
“Sheridan Hill in north Pitt Meadows showcases our community’s natural beauty and is a wildlife habitat for heron, bald eagles, bears and many other animals,” the city’s web page said about the issue.
“The proposed quarry will not only change 7.2 hectares on the south face of the hill and cause the removal of 1,400 cubic metres of trees, but will negatively affect the peaceful space of the residents and trail users in the area, as the mine will be blasting rock from 7 a.m. to 6 p.m. Monday to Saturday for the next five years.”
The applicant is Meadows Quarry of Maple Ridge, which proposes to remove 240,000 tonnes per year, lowering the height of the hill by 30 metres, from 75m to 45m.