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Federal Court allows judicial review of Rocky Mountain coal mine denied by panel

The Federal Court is allowing two Alberta First Nations to ask for a judicial review of a decision that denied permits for an open-pit coal mine in the Rocky Mountains.

The court ruled the Piikani and Stoney First Nations never received a consultation promised by the federal-provincial panel that reviewed the application from Benga Mining. 

That company, now known as Northback, is still attempting to develop a mine at Grassy Mountain and holds exploration permits for the area.

The company also applied for a judicial review but was denied.

In his ruling, Judge Richard Southcott says the federal environment minister’s decision to reject the mine will be set aside.

Steven Guilbeault will have to reconsider the matter following the required consultation.

Alberta also denied permits for the project. 

Douglas Rae, whose firm represented the Stoney Nakoda First Nation, said it’s not clear what happens next. 

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Feb. 13, 2024.

The Canadian Press


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