Local rancher conflicted with Blackwater project

It would seem not everyone is happy to see the success of New Gold roll into town.

Christina Millington

Omineca Express

It would seem not everyone is happy to see the success of New Gold roll into town.

Wayne Daul, a concerned resident currently residing at the base of Mount Davidson stresses that the New Gold operation is having a negative impact on the value of his home and surrounding property.

“It’s hard to work knowing that your place is worth less everyday with a gold mine growing approximately 2 miles away,” Daul said.

Daul purchased his property in 2003, a remote ranch, 212.8 acres, populating the grounds where his wife and daughter currently herd cattle.

New Gold has been in its exploration phases for the past five years in the Blackwater area.

Tim Bekhuys, director of environment and sustainability with New Gold has been in contact with residents and the communities that surround the project site to be sure they’re adapting to the work that is going on in the area.

“New Gold is committed to ensuring we’re a good neighbour,” he said. “We’ve been talking to Wayne since we acquired the property, since June of last year, and had close to a dozen meetings and lots of correspondence with him.”

Daul fears that with an expanding gold mine developing in his backyard, the future sale of his home will not be possible.

“We have a really nice place,” said Daul. “We couldn’t sell it now with a gold mine in our back yard. Who would want to buy such a place.”

Bekhuys stresses that the project is separate from Daul by Mount Davidson, and that the leases within their exploration area are not on Daul’s grazing lease.

“What we’ve done since we took over the property is set up a mining environmental program,” Bekhuys said.

The program ensures that when the project leaves the area it will be monitored to be sure it returns to its original state.

Daul feels as though the efforts on his behalf are being ignored and not addressed.

“We talked to miners and we’re getting nowhere and nobody is helping us,” he said.

 

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