Ore and Orcas

Ore and Orcas

Ore and Orcas: the Remediation of Howe Sound / Átl’ka7tsem

Whale Skull

For the month of October, the Terra Lab will come to life with a dynamic, visual display, focusing on the impact of the mine on the Howe Sound ecosystem. The display will look at the mine's history - including the impacts of pollution and subsequent remediation and recovery - through the lens of its impact on the Howe Sound food chain.

From tiny plankton to massive predators, all living things in Howe Sound/Átl’ḵa7tsemis are connected -- to one another and to the legacy of Britannia Mine.

The water flowing from the old mine contains copper and other metals. This pollution is called acid rock drainage. Following the mine’s closure in 1974, its water treatment system began to fail. This led to decades of polluted mine waters flowing into Howe Sound, and the delicate balance of this ecosystem was disrupted.

Since 2006, a water treatment plant has removed the majority of this acid rock drainage from the water. Thanks to the effort of the community, government, and mining industry, Howe Sound is showing promising signs of recovery. This exhibit celebrates the diversity of aquatic life that is once again able to flourish near Britannia Beach.

To help to mark and celebrate this milestone, we will be bringing some unique marine specimens to the Museum, including dolphin skulls, and an adult Orca skeleton! This interactive display enables adults and kids alike to place real Orca bones on the frame of an adult Orca, rebuilding the skeleton, just as those in the Howe Sound area have helped to rebuild its ecosystem!

Cost included with admission.


Date: October
Time: All Day
Location: The Terra Lab


Thank you to our event partners:

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