Al Hoffman (left)

Al Hoffman (left)

Gravel pit claims award

B.C. Mine Reclamation Award for outstanding reclamation achievement in 2011 has been awarded to operators of the Rosebush pit in Lavington

A Coldstream operation has rounded up recognition for a job well done.

The B.C. Mine Reclamation Award for outstanding reclamation achievement in 2011 has been awarded to operators of the Rosebush pit in Lavington.

“It is validation that we are doing an excellent job reclaiming and operating our pit, as this is a province wide nomination and award,” said Linsey Postill Johannson, who accepted the award with her husband Jamie Johannson of R.E. Postill and Sons (which operates the pit) and Keith Balcaen, Coldstream Ranch owner.

The award, from the B.C. Technical and Research Committee on Reclamation (BCTRCR) was given at the 36th annual British Columbia Mine Reclamation Awards presentation in Kamloops Sept. 19.

“It’s basically saying we are doing the best job in B.C. at reclaiming,” said Linsey, adding that they were also nominated by the pit’s mine inspector  from the Ministry of Energy and Mines.

R.E. Postill & Sons Ltd.is a fourth generation family owned and operated Coldstream business, which was started by Linsey’s great-grandfather Russell Eugene Postill in 1944.

“We employ 17 people, many of whom have worked for us for their entire careers and for three generations of Postill’s,” said Linsey.

Mining commenced in the Rosebush pit in the 1970’s and has covered an area of approximately 60 hectares.

To date 40 hectares have been reclaimed.  As the gravel is extracted, clean quality fill is brought into the pit to bring it back up to grade and then topped with native topsoil.

“This reclamation improves the land for farming in three ways; increasing water retention, leaving the pasture in a more farmable grade, and providing more consistent topsoil coverage.”

Coldstream Ranch does the final preparations, by adding manure and preparing and planting the crops.  The land is currently planted by  Coldstream Ranch with grass, alfalfa mix and corn harvested for hay and silage, and also used as pasture for horses and cows.

“Through this reclamation process we have improved the land from class four agricultural land to a class two agricultural land, improving the production and sustainability of the land for future agricultural uses.”

While there have been some neighbouring complaints about dust and noise associated with the pit, the award proves that it is being operated at award-winning standards, notes Linsey.