Truck traffic is a big concern if Rise Gold reopens the mine. This Union article by freelancer, Shira Moolten, takes a closer look at claims and concerns about traffic, road quality, noise, property value, and environmental impacts. She includes some insightful quotes from Sierra Fund's CEO, Elizabeth "Izzy" Martin.
If the Idaho-Maryland Mine reopens, haul trucks will become a familiar sight on Grass Valley roadways for the next 20 years, according to project plans submitted by Rise Gold Corp. to Nevada County.
The trucks will make up to 100 trips a day, averaging 50, from 6 a.m. to 10 p.m., seven days a week.
They will be transporting engineered fill, or barren rock and sand tailings, generated from tunneling underground. The proposed plans designate two routes for the trucks: one route between the Brunswick and Centennial sites, along Brunswick Road and Whispering Pines Lane; and one route between the Brunswick site and Highway 20/49, along Brunswick Road, for engineered fill to be delivered to potential customers.
The Centennial site, where engineered fill will be used as part of a restoration project, is expected to take five years to complete, during which time the trucks will be divided between the two routes. For the next 15 years, the number of trucks on the road will not decrease, but will move entirely to the Highway 20/49 route.
For many, the trucks represent one of the key issues surrounding the reopening. MineWatch Nevada County has listed the trucks as one of its eight main reasons to oppose the mine.
“I think the trucks would be the most egregious, worst thing we’d notice right away,” said Elizabeth Martin, CEO of the Sierra Fund and former member of the Nevada County Board of Supervisors. Whether they’re the biggest concern, she said, depends on where someone lives. “If you use those roads all the time, it will be the only thing you’re upset about,” she said. “If you don’t use those roads as much, but your well has gone dry, well, that will be the thing.”
The evidence so far is mixed...
Shira Moolten, freelancer for The Union
A recent article in The Union by a freelancer contained statements that were wrong. First, engineered fill from the Rise Gold mine is not part of a restoration project. Fill is proposed to be put at the Centennial site after completion of an independent voluntary toxic cleanup project at Centennial. The article said: “The Centennial site, where engineered fill will be used as part of a restoration project …”
Second, haul trucks would be going down Brunswick Road toward Highway 20/49 for 70 years, not 15 years. The February 2020 Rise Gold Air Quality report indicated that in regard to long-term operations, engineered fill would be trucked to the Centennial industrial site for five years, to a pad at the Brunswick industrial site for five years, and off-site to support local construction projects for 70 years.
The Union article said: “The Centennial site … is expected to take five years to complete, during which time the trucks will be divided between the two routes. For the next 15 years, the number of trucks on the road will not decrease, but will move entirely to the Highway 20/49 route.”
Please set the facts straight on this important issue.