BKL Consultants was retained by ERM to assist them in preparing an Environmental Impact Assessment to BC Environmental Assessment Act (BCEAA) and Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) standards for the Galore Creek Mine Project. The Prime Consultant was NovaGold Resources Inc.
The Galore Creek Project is a copper and other precious metals resource located in a remote and mountainous region of northwestern British Columbia and has the potential to become one of the top copper/precious metals mines in the world once developed. Access to the property is currently made by helicopter but would eventually be made using a new +100 km road. There are high value goat, moose and grizzly bear habitat nearby necessitating a wildlife noise impact study. There are no human communities that would be impacted by noise due to mine construction or operations.
Hundreds of noise sources were modeled for the project using the outdoor sound propagation software Cadna/A for two construction phases and the midlife operations phase. Daytime and nighttime Leq and maximum noise contours were calculated at three areas: mine site, airstrip and access road, and included the following sources:
- Helicopters and airplane traffic during construction and operation
- Mine site blasting
- Mine site avalanche control using howitzers
- Heavy equipment and plant noise due to processing of ore and waste
- Construction equipment noise along access road
- Operation phase heavy truck traffic along access road
Meteorological settings were defined in Cadna/A based on a study conducted by the client, which included temperature, solar radiation and wind statistics at a number of locations. The resultant noise contours were exported as ArcView grids so that they could be included as one of the client’s GIS layers.