June 19, 2015 - 7:38 AM
KAMLOOPS – The Stop Ajax Mine online fundraising campaign has officially ended and the goal was surpassed by more than $6,000.
The 30-day Indiegogo campaign ended at midnight, June 19, and raised $31,350. Additional donations by cheque raised the tally to $35,358.
“We are so very grateful to each of the hundreds of donors who made the campaign such a success. People responded quickly and generously to our ‘David and Goliath’ struggle to defend the health and well-being of the citizens of Kamloops,” coalition spokesperson, Dianne Kerr says.
The funds raised will go towards hiring ‘independent experts’ to evaluate the Ajax application. Expected to be thousands of pages worth of technical language, the coalition wants the experts to decipher the application and identify deficiencies or public health and safety issues.
“The process to this point has heavily favored the proponent. The federal government has refused to conduct a full independent panel review, the provincial government has refused to give an independent health impact assessment and citizens have been denied the opportunity for a public forum to cross examine mine information. Our hired experts will provide some of the much needed independent scrutiny of data provided by the proponent,” Kerr says.
The coalition will establish a preliminary budget to determine where the funds will be spent.
Ajax’s parent company, KGHM, never objected to the fundraising campaign. Spokesperson Robert Koopmans said KGHM was dedicated to a thorough examination of the proposed mine and that experts would only reinforce the Ajax project. KGHM even donated $5000 to the campaign, which the coalition refunded almost immediately.
The proposed Ajax Mine has been a point of contention in Kamloops for a while now. If approved, the open-pit copper-gold mine will be located southwest of the city. The mine’s formal application is expected from KGHM this summer.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015