NEWS — An independent study on potential health impacts of the Ajax mine isn’t needed, says a spokesperson for KGHM International in Kamloops.
Community affairs officer Robin Bartlett told The Armchair Mayor today that a “human health and ecological risk assessment” is already underway.
Dr. Jill Calder of Kamloops Physicians for a Healthy Environment has called for a separate health study. At a public talk last Sunday hosted by the TRU Faculty Association’s human rights committee, Calder said health issues should be given equal importance to environment studies.
“What should be done is a full health impact assessment that is not rolled up in an environment assessment,” said Calder, who expressed concern about air quality.
She said an increase in particulates in the air has been linked to serious health issues and increased mortality.
But Bartlett said one of the studies being conducted for KGHM includes health impacts as well as socio-economic impacts and such things as property values and infrastructure.
“It’s a little more in depth” than just a health assessment, she said.
Bartlett said there’s no timetable for completion of the study, which is one of several underway as part of the company’s environmental assessment.
Last September KGHM announced a delay in completion of its application for the project until this year. Barlett said today it’s now expected it could take longer.