Donkin Coal Mining Approval. Donkin Coal Mine.

Call to Action: Tell NS Environment Minister to rescind new coal mining approval

Photo of coal. Page: Donkin Coal Mine.To: Tim Halman, Nova Scotia Minister of Environment and Climate Change
c.c. Premier Tim Houston and Steven Guilbeault, Federal Minister of Environment and Climate Change

This message is to inform you that:

  • The industrial approval your department recently granted to the Donkin coal mine in Cape Breton is absolutely unacceptable.
  • You recently conceded that the Donkin Mine is the second-largest emitter in the province, after Nova Scotia Power Inc. This approval, which allows the coal mine to operate to the end of the decade (December 31, 2029!), means that Nova Scotia cannot meet its greenhouse gas reduction targets by 2030 (unless you don’t count coal mining emissions and that’s cheating!).
  • Trucking the coal day and night on narrow public roads from the mine to the Port of Sydney is absurd and dangerous—and it was not part of the original plan submitted for Environmental Assessment in 2012.
  • Your department has received hundreds of complaints about the mine’s industrial noise pollution from nearby residents. This noise prevents them from being able to sleep, and it has cascading negative impacts on their physical and mental health. Yet, despite the lack of resolution, your department is allowing the mine to continue operating for at least 7 more years. We say, Oh, no you don’t!
  • The mine poses enormous risks of contamination to the local environment and communities, yet your department has allowed Kameron Coal, the for-profit owner (part of the US-based Cline Group), to police itself without government inspections or monitoring. We do not accept giving the company a “Take our word for it” license, nor do we trust that the company is adequately monitoring and reporting its acid mine drainage, airborne contaminants, or impacts to local watersheds and wildlife.
  • We challenge your trickle-down approach to purportedly bringing an economic boon to Cape Breton or the province as a whole, and note that, to date, there is no evidence that the Donkin Mine has made any royalty payments to the province or paid corporate taxes (you can check for yourself at the Government of Canada’s Extractive Sector Transparency Measures Act (ESTMA) Data Portal).

Your government has crossed a line—the line of decency and common sense. You have an opportunity to set this right by overturning the Industrial Approval that the Province granted the mine. We will be closely watching for your response on April 3 to Sierra Club Canada’s appeal to the industrial approval for the Donkin Mine.

To send your message directly to Minister Halman, Premier Houston, and Minister Guilbeault add your information on the right.