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Ajax set to present four days of open houses at TRU
There won't be any hard data on vibrations, noise or other effects of the proposed Ajax copper and gold mine on Kamloops, but proponents are hoping four days of open houses can still answer some community questions.
"We don't have results available, so we want people to keep that in mind," said company spokeswoman Robin Bartlett.
"But, they will hopefully have a better understanding of the components that go into the testing we're doing."
Each of the open houses, which begin on Monday, Sept. 9, and run through Thursday, Sept. 12, will feature identical presentations from the experts conducting studies for the mine's environmental assessment.
Bartlett said the experts will go into detail about what is required to model the mine's effects on air and water, noise and vibrations.
Experts will also discuss Ajax's human health and ecological risk assessment and the impacts of blasting, including ground vibrations and noise energy.
"This is a pretty small number of models compared to what we're doing overall, but these are the ones where people are most consistently the most concerned in the community right now," Bartlett said.
When KGHM first said last spring it was planning another round of open houses, the company was still planning to submit an application for an environmental-assessment certificate in late September.
But, last month the company scrapped that plan, saying it had found new ore bodies that required further study and could change the setup of the mine.
Ajax's application is now expected some time in 2014.
Bartlett said the company still thinks it's important to give residents some information in the meantime.
"We can't give results, but they might have a better understanding of why maybe it takes as long as it does for us to get through the process, all the different steps we need to take and what we're actually looking for," she said.
All four sessions will take place in the Grand Hall at Thompson Rivers University.
Afternoon presentations run on Tuesday, Sept. 10 and Thursday, Sept. 12, from 1 p.m. to 5 p.m. Evening sessions run on Monday, Sept. 9, and Wednesday, Sept. 11, from 5 p.m. to 9 p.m.
Pre-registration for the events is encouraged, Bartlett said, but not mandatory. To do so, call 250-374-5446 or email email@example.com.
KGHM's representatives won't be the only people talking Ajax on TRU campus during the sessions.
The Kamloops Area Preservation Association is planning a rally outside the Campus Activity Centre on Thursday, Sept. 12 at 12:30 p.m.
A Facebook page for the demonstration describes it as a "peaceful protest to bring awareness to the KGHM and our City Council that this mine is not in the best interest of our city."
Bartlett said the company is aware of KAPA's plans.
"That's their choice to do that. They have that right," she said.