The Britannia mine, located 45km north of Vancouver, British Columbia, Canada, commenced production of copper ore over 100 years ago. Some 36 years after the mine closed, it continues to generate an average of about 300kg/day each of copper and zinc, as well as relatively minor amounts of other metals, dissolved in some 5 million cubic metres of acid rock drainage (ARD) each year. Environmental remediation work by the Province of British Columbia commenced in 2001, after securing C30 million from the former mine owners to address environmental liabilities. Implementation of the environmental remediation work at the mine stimulated interest in development of a part of the mine property by a local developer and, through a well-planned and collaborative approach, led to construction of new infrastructure for the existing community at Britannia Beach, including private home ownership, new development lots and the rejuvenation of the town. This renewed interest in the Britannia mine (declared a Canadian national Historic Site in 1989) and the associated community resulted in the contribution of government (Federal and Provincial) and private funds into the restoration of the iconic mill building in Britannia Beach. Additional funds were secured and realised for major facility upgrades to the Britannia Mine Museum, which occupies lands once used by the former mineral processing operations at the mine. Further tourist interest in the site is expected following recently completed upgrades to the adjacent Sea-to-Sky Highway leading northward to the 2010 Winter Olympic events in Whistler.
O'Hara, G., Bordian, J., Clausen, K. & Wernick, B. G. (2010). Environment remediation works stimulate renewed interest in mine heritage and tourism at Britannia Beach. In A.B. Fourie, M. Tibbett, & J. Wiertz (Eds.), Proceedings of the Fifth International Conference on Mine Closure. Australian Centre for Geomechanics, Viña del Mar (pp. 205-215).