Cranbrook set to host Minerals South conference

Over 100 representatives from the natural resource industry are expected at event from Nov. 5-7

For the Townsman

More than 100 people from B.C.’s mining and natural resource sector will gather in Cranbrook to network, exchange ideas and technologies, discuss the current mining climate, and share knowledge at the 15th annual Minerals South Conference and Trade Show, taking place November 5 to 7 at the Heritage Inn Hotel and Convention Centre.

The conference is organized by the East Kootenay Chamber of Mines (EKCM), a non-profit organization actively promoting resource extraction interests in southeastern British Columbia.

EKCM President Jason Jacob notes the conference is not only a chance to showcase industry innovation and technologies, but it also provides professional development and networking opportunities for individuals and companies in the area.

“This conference presents suppliers, workers, post-secondary students, and employers a chance to gain new knowledge and connections and keep up-to-date on the latest regulations,” said Jacob. “In addition to technical presentations on projects in the Kootenay area, Minerals South offers attendees a venue to discuss solutions to mining and exploration-related issues.”

A free and public presentation will take place at 7 p.m. on November 5 at the Heritage Inn Ballroom. Guy Santucci will present his talk Recent Paleontology finds of the East Kootenay, and Rohanna Gibson will give her talk Mining History of the East Kootenay. Doors open at 6:30 p.m. The public is also invited to the ‘rock room’ November 6 and 7, where Below BC will have a professional geologist available to identify any rocks or fossils brought in by the public.

Other Minerals South highlights include a one-day workshop titled Permitting and Reclamation Practices and Bonding, presented by the Association for Mineral Exploration (AME). The workshop, which takes place on November 5, 8 a.m. to 4:30 p.m., will introduce new tools AME has developed to support its members with early engagement with Indigenous groups and with planning and undertaking reclamation for mineral exploration. Conference attendees will also take part in an interactive session, working with the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources’ reclamation bond calculator to estimate bonding costs for a proposed exploration project and demonstrate how modifying an exploration program can reduce potential bonding requirements.

November 6 and 7 will feature two full days of technical talks, a trade show, displays of paleontology fossils, and a showcase of drill core and field specimens of rocks and high-grade ore.

“And then we have the school program, which will run Monday to Wednesday this year,” said Jacob. “We are pleased to have teachers from MineralsEd, an educational organization based out of Vancouver, B.C., go into our local schools where they will be doing four Jr. Geologist Workshops and three classes of Kids & Rocks. We are excited to have four classes and the local Boys & Girls club attend the conference on Wednesday.”

The conference field trip will be to the Sullivan Mine Museum Core Display and Powerhouse, also with a tour of the EKCM Core Library near Fort Steele.

The East Kootenay Chamber of Mines organizes and hosts the Minerals South Conference and Tradeshow every two years, alternating with the Chamber of Mines of Eastern BC, located in Nelson. It is the EKCM’s primary fundraiser. To register, become a sponsor, or find out more visit the website.

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