Where They Stand

reponse from:

George Heyman

Vancouver-Fairview  |   BC NDP   |  May 03, 2017


  1. What fiscal measures will you implement to ensure that mineral exploration and development remains globally competitive and able to attract investment?

John Horgan and the BC New Democrat governments support mining. Under the BC NDP government in the 1990s we opened six new mines, including three of BC’s biggest metal mines still operating today: Huckleberry, Mount Polley and Kemess South.

The BC NDP implemented a host of policies which were supportive to mining, including appointing the province’s first Mining Advocate, providing grants and tax credits for mineral exploration, and creating the first comprehensive Environmental Assessment Process.

The BC NDP supports pro-mining policies such as continuing the flow-through share tax credit and the exploration tax credit, maintaining support for Geoscience BC, removing the PST from electricity used in mining, enhancing the Environmental Assessment process, ensuring Mines Act permits are processed quickly, and investing in mining-related training programs like the training tax credit.


  1. B.C. industries compete with many global jurisdictions that do not have a carbon tax. What measures will you take to ensure trade exposed industries like mining remain competitive while paying for carbon emissions?

We have a carbon pricing plan that provides certainty to industry by setting out carbon tax rates through 2022 and that work within the parameters of the federal government’s carbon pricing mandate. We will use incremental carbon tax revenue to provide rebates and to invest in climate change solutions. We will also work to protect trade-exposed businesses by providing separate sectoral reduction targets and work with them to create sectoral reduction plans.

We will also establish a BC Mining Jobs Task Force, mandated to work with the mining industry and mining communities to make jobs secure and mines viable as commodity prices fluctuate.

  1. Do you believe revenue collected from carbon tax should be reinvested in new processes or technologies that further reduce greenhouse gas emissions at mining operations?

Yes. We will reinvest carbon tax revenue in GHG-reduction technologies and programs.

Transportation Infrastructure

  1. What will you do to promote infrastructure development in B.C. that supports mineral and coal exploration and mining (hydroelectric power generation, transmission lines, natural resource roads, railways, ports etc.)?

BC’s New Democrats will negotiate with local governments a share of revenue from future resource development to enable communities to address current impacts arising from major resource development, service and infrastructure deficits in communities to leave a legacy in northern British Columbia.

By starving rural communities of infrastructure Christy Clark and the BC Liberals have made it hard for mining industries to attract workers. For example, Brucejack mine is opening in the northwest but workers and their families looking to relocate to nearby communities face public school closures, wait lists for family doctors and now a plan for a cut to mammography services. When people are moving to work at a mine, those kind of service make a difference. We’re supporting the mining industry by reinvesting in communities.

Land Access

  1. What will you do to ensure prospectors and mineral explorers have access to as much land as possible to conduct temporary and low impact mineral exploration for valuable, but hidden, deposits?

In partnership with First Nations and communities, we will modernize land-use planning, which will bring more certainty to access for mineral exploration, while also expanding the role of the BC Geological Survey and GeoScienceBC into that process.

First Nations

  1. What will you do to resolve long-standing land claims? And what are the opportunities to enhance relationships between government, First Nations and industry?

We support comprehensive agreements that cover the relationship between First Nations and government, which brings more certainty than the focus on one-off agreements that the Christy Clark government has slowly pursued.

In the most recent Survey of Mining Companies by the Fraser Institute, BC ranked 18th out of 104 jurisdictions regarding investor certainty around land claims. That’s the legacy of 16 years of BC Liberal government.

Skills and Training

  1. What will you do to encourage new skills development opportunities and support the attraction, recruitment and retention of highly qualified workers needed for B.C. mining projects both now and in the future?

We will provide graduate student scholarships that will help graduate more people in geoscience and engineering.  We will also improve the apprentice sponsorship process and provide incentives that will increase the number of apprenticeships. We will also improve the social infrastructure to attract and retain workers and their families in the communities that the mining industry relies on.

We will partner with universities, colleges, technical institutions and business to build and fund specialized innovation centres in the interior and northern BC that will help grown and strengthen traditional industries like mining, agriculture and forestry.

We will also establish a BC Mining Jobs Task Force, mandated to work with the mining industry and mining communities to make jobs secure and mines viable as commodity prices fluctuate.