British Columbia has the largest mining sector in Canada with more than 1,200 mineral exploration and mining companies, including 19 mines based and operating in the province. Mining in BC is rapidly growing as 2011 made history as a record breaker with $463 million spent on mineral exploration expenditures in BC, compared to only $29 million in 2001. Mining companies are increasing capital investments as well, with over $2 billion invested by mining companies in 2011, compared to only $700 million the year before. The mining sector employs over 29,000 people in British Columbia.

BC Ministry of Energy, Mines and Responsible for Housing

The government of BC Ministry of Energy and Mines is the government’s main representation in the mining industry. The ministry’s focus is on the BC Jobs Plan, which includes opening new markets and building relationships with overseas investors to protect and create jobs in the province.

There are three goals that the Ministry is focused on completing. First, the ministry is working to create eight new mines and expand nine existing ones by 2015. If this is achieved it is estimated to increase mining revenue by $1.6 billion, create 7,000 jobs, and generate over $150 million per year in government revenues. The second goal is to increase mining exploration to ensure long-term mining activity in the future. This includes clearing a backlog of permit applications, and committing to a 60-day turnaround of all applications in the future. The third goal is to ensure mine development improves the social and economic well-being of First nations and to respect their cultural values. The ministry plans on having ten non-treaty agreements signed by the government and First Nations communities by 2015. This will help bring jobs and foster economic growth in First Nations communities.

There are six components that the Ministry of Energy and Mines is working to achieve through these goals. The ministry wants to enhance the province’s competitive edge, streamline regulatory processes, ensure the health and safety of the industry’s workers, protect the environment, build partnerships with First Nations, and develop a skilled workforce.

More information about the BC Jobs Plan can be found in their Mining Strategy document.

The BC Ministry of Energy and Mines hosts a map of operating mines and select major exploration projects map on their website.

The BC Ministry of Energy and Mines website also highlights contact information, employment openings, contracts that are up for bidding, and links to other non-government websites.

Regional District of Bulkley Nechako

The Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako has developed a comprehensive Mining Industry Web Portal that enables local businesses and investors to access a wealth of information specifically focused on the region's mining sector.

The mining web portal provides information for mining and exploration companies as well as suppliers, featuring up-to-date events, media releases, employment, and education opportunities within the Regional District of Bulkley-Nechako.

The website's online mining business directory provides links to everything from accommodations and entertainment in the area to contact information for local suppliers and current exploration sites. Additionally, there is information regarding mining properties for sale and current market data regarding commodities, local companies stocks and currencies.


Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia

The Association for Mineral Exploration British Columbia (AMEBC) represents 4,800 members including geoscientists, prospectors, engineers, entrepreneurs, exploration companies, suppliers, mineral producers, and associations who are engaged in mineral exploration and development in BC and throughout the world.

The Association for Mineral Exploration BC has three areas in which it is directing its focus. First, AMEBC is developing and sharing information that discusses the impacts of land use designations in British Columbia, as well as discussing industry-related issues with the government. Second, the association is working with government to be more consistent in their efforts to coordinate and improve permitting processes and consultation timelines with aboriginal communities. Part of this goal is to help the government implement an online permit tracking information system for notice of work applications, as well as to support the major projects and investment initiatives being developed in the province. The final area of focus is to increase knowledge and understanding of the industry, and specifically low impact mineral exploration, to the general public and government.

The Association for Mineral Exploration BC website has information on the associations policy and history, as well as up-to-date industry news. Also available is an online library of industry related publications and resources.

Benefits to becoming a member of the Association for Mineral Exploration BC include complimentary listing in the online directory, corporate recognition in the AMEBC newsletter, exclusive discounts, access to AMEBC’s library of industry-related publications and more.

The website also has a Job Board for those looking for work, as well as companies looking to post current openings.


The Mining Association of British Columbia

The Mining Association of British Columbia (MABC) represents the collective needs and interests of operating coal, metal and industrial mineral mining companies.  MABC provides member companies with services including: participation in key government/industry committees, updates on regulatory change, access to meetings that provide the opportunity to exchange information among members, joint industry action on issues of common concern, and the availability of staff expertise on the areas of greatest interest.

The Mining Association of British Columbia liaises with government legislators, lobbies for regulatory advancement and publicly promotes the economic and social value of mining. Their goal is to help clear the public and political paths essential to the industry's future growth and development.

Photo Credit: Alex Zander

There is detailed information regarding mining as a career on the MABC website, including descriptions of positions, 
education availability, and Co-op programs for post-secondary students interested in working in the field. Also on the website is an outline of their policies, and a resource centre that has a variety of publications, presentations, speeches and more.

The Mining Association of British Columbia website has an interactive map highlighting all the current mining operations at every stage through British Columbia. The map also provides links to company websites.

The Mining Association job board is a hub for individuals looking to gain employment or for companies looking to highlight openings. The page has postings for each level of positions, from accounting, administration and human resources, to engineering, maintenance and operations, and everything in between.

The Mining Suppliers Association of B.C. (MSABC) is a non-profit association, affiliated with the Mining Association of British Columbia. It is comprised of suppliers, contractors and consultants to the BC mining industry who are committed to promoting the sustainability of this valuable resource. The MSABC website hosts an in depth directory of all its members, allowing for ease of contact with any resource.

Northern Interior Mining Group

The Northern Interior Mining Group is an informal association formed by businesses in Northern British Columbia as a means of connecting different businesses in the mining industry, with the goal of increasing the range of services and products in order to support and promote mine development in British Columbia. The association’s region extends from the northernmost point of the province down to Williams Lake, and includes everything in between.

The Northern Interior Mining Group focuses on three areas: teambuilding, marketing, and human resource development. By focusing on these three objectives, the association hopes to further communication and understanding between its members and the greater mining industry. Collaboration, partnerships and regional alliances are encouraged by the Northern Interior Mining Group with the hope that they will encourage businesses to look into the global mining industry rather that limiting themselves to the regional markets.

The Northern Interior Mining Group has an extensive membership and a detailed directory of different resources available in the region.

Geoscience BC

Geoscience BC is an industry-led, not-for-profit, applied geoscience organization. Geoscience BC works in partnership with industry, academia, government, First Nations, and communities to fund applied geoscience projects with the objective to attract mineral and oil & gas exploration to British Columbia.

Geoscience BC's mandate includes the collection, interpretation, and delivery of geoscience data and expertise, to promote investment in resource exploration and development in British Columbia.

Many of Geoscience BC’s projects are identified through a process of requests for proposals (RFP). They have two main RFP's: open requests for any applied or innovative geoscience projects that will attract investment in exploration in BC; and targeted requests that are more directed proposals to undertake specific work, or calls for bids on specific surveys, in order to achieve some of our program objectives. In all cases, Geoscience BC seeks collaborative and partnership projects that come with supportive funding. Projects funded include newly collected geoscience data, new ideas and new technologies, compilations and reprocessing of existing data, and applications of existing technologies in new areas

The Geoscience BC website has extensive information for the industry including raw data, maps, and viewing/analysis tools. Additionally, there is also information about current Geoscience BC projects and previous publications and news updates.

Those interested in pursuing a career with Geoscience BC are recommended to visit their Careers page.

College of New Caledonia

The College of New Caledonia has a Mining Industry Certificate program available. The Mining Industry Certificate (MINE) program is an innovative educational program designed to train students for a career in the surface mining industry. The program helps ensure local residents have specialized knowledge and skills to access employment opportunities at mine sites throughout the region.

Designed to train students for a career in the surface mining industry, the MINE program uses heavy equipment simulators that fast track heavy equipment operators to about forty percent proficiency before they are ever on a job site, saving mining companies’ considerable amounts of training time, and making graduates from this program very desirable to mine operators. While the heavy-haul truck and front-end loader simulators are essential to the program, students develop a full range of skills. By the time they graduate, they have also had on-site training; earned the safety certifications they will require and gained a real-world understanding of what it’s like to work as part of a team at a mine site.

Completion of the program gives gradates their Mining Industry Certificate, an opportunity to build credits towards and/or complete the BC Adult Graduation diploma, and a base knowledge that would be beneficial for students who pursue further education in the Mining Technology diploma. 

The program requirements are available online.

Those interested in applying can do so online, or by visiting one of the College of New Caledonia’s offices.

The Miner’s Manual

The Miner’s Manual is an extensive web resource and directory site focused directly at the mining industry. It has up-to-date industry news, press releases, and mining commodity prices. The website also has a properties page, showcasing properties available for purchase.

One of the most significant features of the website is their directory, a highly extensive international directory showcasing mining and drilling companies, equipment suppliers, technical and support services, professional services ranging from accounting and consulting to legal connections and mining associations and more.

The Northern BC Mining website is a news website featuring mining across Northern BC. The website features press releases from companies as well as articles relating to the industry.

North Central Drilling and Exploration Services

Falcon Drilling

Falcon Drilling is an international diamond drilling service supplier. Falcon’s first office is in Prince George and was established in 1986. The company has since established offices in several parts of the world and has operated in many others. International operations are controlled by offices in Argentina, Mexico and Mongolia. Falcon also operates in Panama, Papua New Guinea, Senegal and Zimbabwe. The company provides diamond drilling, helicopter services, construction, radio and satellite communications and forestry operations under very adverse topographical conditions.

Falcon Drilling uses specially manufactured drills that are designed and manufactured in Canada to suit a variety of different objectives. Custom drills include the F1000 and F2000 drills and the Kubota Mobile Drill that is capable of drilling up to 100 meters. Local manufacturing and quality control are in place to maximum reliability and minimum down time.

The Falcon Drilling website has data regarding their drill rigs, the Kubota Mobile Drill, Bit and Drill rods, and helicopters. There is also information about their policies and training, their radio communications, and contact information for each of their offices.

Geotech Drilling Services

Geotech Drilling Services is an international diamond drilling service company. Geotech offers a wide range of services including geotechnical drilling, exploration, environmental drilling, hydrogeological drilling, and geothermal drilling.

Geotech Drilling has four different heliportable rigs, seven track mount rigs and three truck mount rigs. Their heliportable rigs are capable of completing deep hole drilling, up to 1400 meters NQ-sized drilling (75.7 mm diameter). Each of their heliportable models has different advantages, and as such can be more suited to different drilling jobs, whether it is mud rotary, air rotary, coring, difficult terrain or deep hole drilling. Their track mount rigs are able to perform in numerous drilling sectors, including air rotary, reverse circulation, auguring, coring, geotechnical investigation and more. Some track mount models are also equipped with remote operation control, allowing for safe mobilization in any condition. The truck mount models are designed for easy and swift transportation. The truck mounts are designed for quick and safe drill stem tripping, and are proficient in air rotary, mud rotary and coring.

Comprehensive information about each of Geotech Drilling’s rigs can be found on their website.

Geotech Drilling’s website has details about each of their drilling services and their rigs. There are also quote estimates and project evaluations available online, as well as examples of previously completed projects.

Interested in becoming part of Geotech Drilling Services? Visit their Jobs page.

Radius Drilling

Radius Drilling has surface diamond drilling experience in Central America, South America, The Dominican Republic, Africa, and Canada. They specialize in drilling permafrost in the North West Territories

Radius diamond drills have capabilities to HQ (96 mm diameter hole) to 800ft, NQ (75.7 mm diameter hole) to 2000ft, and BQ (60 mm diameter hole) to 2800ft.
Radius drills weigh less than 1000 pounds, thus making transportability easy with most small helicopters. Radius drills are designed to access remote locations that many other drills are unable to access.

Contact details and career application information is available on the Radius Drilling website.