Mine’s social closure plan recognized
REPUBLIC – The Kettle River-Buckhorn Mine’s social closure plan has been awarded the U.S. Bureau of Land Management’s (BLM) 2016 Hardrock Mineral Community Outreach and Economic Security Award.
The prestigious award recognizes work in three components of sustainable development: environmental health, social responsibility and economic security. It is one of just five categories in BLM’s Reclamation and Sustainable Mineral Development Awards program across the country.
“We are proud to receive this national award in recognition of our commitment to the local community,” said Mark Ioli, Vice-President and General Manager, Kettle River-Buckhorn. “We want to ensure that the community is prepared after mining ends at Buckhorn. From providing skills training and development workshops, we are fully committed to the economic well-being of the community. We are also committed to environmental stewardship and reclaiming and remediating the land after mining.”
Kettle River-Buckhorn has created a comprehensive closure plan that includes environmental reclamation and providing support to mitigate social and economic impacts in the community after the mine closes. Kettle River-Buckhorn has led training sessions to help members of the community learn about starting or growing their own business, including holding workshops so people gain a better understanding about business laws and taxes, using social media and strategic planning. Other aspects of the closure plan include providing job counseling and supporting career fairs to help employees find their next jobs and providing the community at-large other training and tools to adapt to life post-mining. The closure plan is a result of ongoing consultations and needs assessment surveys that the site conducted in the community.
“Through efforts like yours, America’s mineral community continues to demonstrate its accomplishments and commitment to environmental stewardship, while providing the nation with the minerals needed for America’s economic well-being,” said Hal Quinn, President and CEO of the National Mining Association.
Highlighting responsible mineral resource development and sustainable development, the BLM awards also promote successful ideas and practices that may be implemented at various locations throughout the nation.
“These awards exemplify what the new legacy of mining has become in the West,” said Michael Nedd, BLM Assistant Director for Energy, Minerals and Realty Management. “They highlight responsible mineral development that protects and restores the environment while meeting modern needs for these raw materials.”
To watch short videos about the mine’s employee development program and environmental reclamation plan, visit Kettle River-Buckhorn’s Facebook page.