A quarry proposed for Sumas Mountain would be adjacent to Sumas Mounatin Inter-regional Park. FVRD image.

A quarry proposed for Sumas Mountain would be adjacent to Sumas Mounatin Inter-regional Park. FVRD image.

Sumas Mountain quarry proposal dead, recreation groups say

Proposal to extract 4,000 truckloads of rock a year had faced significant opposition from locals

Controversial plans for a new gravel quarry on Sumas Mountain appear dead.

Residents, non-profits and recreation groups expressed joy Wednesday after receiving word that the province had quashed an application to start mining rock next to Sumas Mountain Inter-regional Park.

The proposal to extract 4,000 truckloads of rock a year from the site drew almost universal condemnation. Trail users said the proposal would “effectively close” the mountain to hikers and mountain bikers, the city bemoaned the impact of increased truck traffic on its roads, and the Fraser Valley Regional District expressed worry about the effect on its park and the mountain’s environment. The proposal also failed to receive any support from the Sumas First Nation.

On Wednesday, Steve Bennett posted on the Fraser Valley Mountain Bike Association website that the province had denied the application.

Bennett wrote: “Our #SaveSumas team just received official word from the Ministry of Energy, Mines, and Petroleum Resources that the Sumas Mountain Quarry proposal has been denied, and the proponent has relinquished his mineral rights on Sumas Mountain.”

There was more good news.

“The icing on the cake to this news is that the Ministry has also confirmed it has started a process which will ensure this area of Sumas Mountain is permanently protected from any further mining claims,” Bennett wrote. “The #SaveSumas team has been engaged to work with the Ministry in this process.”

Bennett hailed the work by local user groups, and said the petitions, letters and other acts of activism had made a difference.

more to come