Wednesday April 16, 2014

Council concerned about air but raises no objections to Moly-Cop expansion


Moly-Cop’s expansion plans in Kamloops mean a second building slightly larger than the existing one and a doubling of air emissions.

Council voted unanimously Tuesday to authorize staff to indicate there are no technical concerns with the facility, but with the proviso that the Ministry of Environment take all precautions and monitor the operation.

Coun. Tina Lange was absent.

City environmental services manager Jen Fretz said Tuesday the company is investing in the best technology available for its proposed second Kamloops operation, which would be built next to its other building in Dallas.

The provincial Ministry of Environment is also involved, especially looking at air emissions from the expansion that’s expected to start operation in March 2015 and run 24 hours a day.

Fretz noted the current operation has had no problems with the ministry or with Interior Health.

“It's a twin of the existing facility. Emissions are below B.C. air quality standards. There are no specific standards around the type of equipment they are using but the technology is the best available and meets requirements for other types of industry,” she said.

Interior Health did send the City a letter suggesting the municipality request air emission models once the new plant is commissioned.

Mayor Peter Miliobar said the expansion will be using natural gas for fuel and no other combustibles.

Coun. Pat Wallace said Moly-Cop has been a good company in town so far, and she was glad to see the investment.

Fretz noted every airshed can only stand a certain amount of pollution and that’s an unknown for Kamloops.

“We don't see any issue with Moly-Cop coming in. But we want to look at determining the cumulative effect of Moly-Cop and other industries in that area.”

Coun. Arjun Singh asked what the net addition would be for emissions in Kamloops as a whole.

Fretz said that’s the question that staff haven’t been able to answer yet.

But Moly-Cop is not one of the bigger emitters in town and is using the best technology available, she said. The company ranks 496th in Canada for greenhouse gas creation.

The modeling requested by Interior Health would help provide background levels in future, she added.

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