New Gold Inc.

Environmental Assessment and Fish Habitat Offsetting for the Blackwater Gold Project

Supporting New Gold in receiving Provincial and Federal environmental assessment (EA) approvals for the Project through the collaborative resolution of Indigenous and Regulatory technical comments.

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About

Palmer became directly engaged with the project on behalf of New Gold in 2015, to assist with the fish habitat offsetting plan for the Blackwater Project, a proposed gold-silver mine located 160 km southwest of Prince George, in central British Columbia.

Palmer successfully resolved issues relating to fish and fish habitat in the EA application, on one of the few projects in Canada to undergo a Canadian Science Advisory Secretariat (CSAS) review. This was completed by taking a rigorous scientific and holistic approach to responses and advancing fish habitat offset design for the project.

Leadership
  • Rick Palmer President, Fisheries Biologist
  • Robin McKillop Principal, Geomorphologist
  • May Mason Vice President, Aquatic Ecologist
Client
New Gold Inc.
Services
  • Aquatic Ecology
  • Fluvial Geomorphology
  • Water Quality
Date
2015 — 2018

What We're Doing

Palmer updated the fish and fish habitat environmental effects conclusions, incorporating additional interpretation and lines of evidence from multiple disciplines to address technical concerns relating to the protection of fish and fish habitat. The technical expertise provided by the Palmer team related to in-stream flow needs, fish genetic diversity and imprinting, water chemistry and temperature effects, and natural channel design. This working process also included negotiating approaches to assessment and reporting of effects. Further, through community engagement and field assessment preliminary designs for the restoration, creation and/or enhancement of more than 100,000 m^2 of fish habitat were developed.

Aquatic Ecology

Industry-leading fisheries science consulting and aquatic services assisting in minimizing project effects on fish and complying with environmental legislation. Assessment of fish population dynamics, food web interactions, fish health and aquatic habitats amid human-induced impacts supporting monitoring, permitting and habitat compensation planning.

Fluvial Geomorphology

Watershed-, reach- or site-scale analysis of river behaviour for baseline characterization of sediment transport patterns, erosion risk assessment and mitigation (e.g. bioengineering) for infrastructure and property protection, and 'natural channel design' for creek realignments and habitat restoration. Past trends are used to manage risk to infrastructure and land development, as well as aquatic and riparian ecology

Water Quality

Water Quality refers to the balance of differentiated inputs both chemical, physical, and biological to a specific water body over time. An integral part of environmental permitting and assessment for numerous industries who must characterize their outputs against government regulation and the needs of water using stakeholders.