Government of New Brunswick
 

Fording Streams

Note: Fording of streams is only permitted at recognized fording places and is not permitted within any designated surface drinking water supply watershed. If fording a stream is necessary:

  • One site with suitable bed material be chosen along each watercourse where fording can be carried out at right angles to the banks;
  • Prior approval for fording be obtained from the District Ranger office;
  • All sediment be removed from heavy equipment prior to fording a watercourse;
  • Any disturbed banks resulting from the fording activities are to be restored and stabilized against erosion as soon as the crossing is completed;
  • Boughs and tree tops are to be placed across the approaches of the ford to prevent siltation from reaching the watercourse;
  • Whenever storm runoff is carried directly into a watercourse by ruts cut into the vegetative mat, the ruts must be smooth graded and covered with evergreen boughs anchored with large rocks;
  • No tree is felled across or into the watercourse.

 

 

Drilling

When drilling within 500 meters of a groundwater supply well

  • All groundwater supply wells within 500 meters of a proposed drilling location shall be sampled and the samples submitted for general chemistry and metals analysis, before and after drilling, at the company’s expense. The results of the analyses shall be forwarded to the well owner and copies supplied to the Recorder;
  • Drill holes within 500 meters of a groundwater supply well that encounter multiple water bearing zones shall be grouted with bentonite along their entire length in order to prevent the cross migration of groundwater between different aquifers;
  • A drill hole that encounters artesian flowing conditions, regardless of its proximity to a groundwater supply well, shall be grouted with bentonite over its entire length in order to preserve the groundwater resource and prevent surface erosion issues. An exemption to this requirement may be considered by the Recorder, depending on the circumstances.
  • Drilling for mineral exploration purposes is not permitted within Zones A and B of a designated Wellfield Protected Area.

Drill pump stations

  • The pump stations must be situated a minimum distance of 5 metres (horizontally) from the edge of the watercourse;
  • The pumping station shall be equipped with a device to prevent backflow, that is approved by the Canadian Standards Association, when located within any designated surface drinking water supply watershed;
  • The pump station shall be set up in a manner that will prevent the accidental discharge of a pollutant such as fuel and lubricants from entering a watercourse or wetland;
  • The intake pipes shall be located at least 100 metres downstream, or 500 metres upstream, of the nearest intake of a public water supply system and shall not disturb the bed or shoreline of any watercourse in a protected watershed;
  • The suction hose (in the watercourse) shall be screened at the inlet; the open area of 0.19 sq. m of screen shall be provided for each .028 m3/sec of water being withdrawn; the screen shall have openings not larger than 57 square millimeters.

Drilling effluent, settling ponds, and erosion control

  • The effluent from the drilling operations shall be discharged in a manner that ensures that clean water returns to the watercourse or wetland at all times;
  • The effluent from the drilled sites shall be discharged into the surrounding vegetation at least 60 metres from a watercourse or wetland or into a settling pond excavated a minimum of 30 metres from a watercourse or wetland;
  • Settling ponds shall be constructed to collect the effluent from any drill holes drilled within 30 metres of a natural watercourse or wetland;
  • Settling ponds shall be designed to have adequate storage and retention capacity to prevent sedimentation of a natural watercourse or wetland;
  • All storm runoff shall be diverted away from the settling pond;
  • Measures shall be taken to control erosion around trenches, at drill sites and along constructed access roads by berming, constructing sedimentation ponds and erecting silt barriers where necessary;
  • All settling ponds shall be backfilled, covered with topsoil and seeded as soon as the exploration project is completed.

 

Trenching

Where trenching is required:

  • No trenching shall be carried out within 30 metres of the banks of a watercourse or wetland or within 75 metres of the banks of a watercourse or wetland within any designated surface drinking water supply watershed;
  • The topsoil shall be removed and stockpiled prior to trenching in order to be used for surface re-vegetation of the reclaimed trench;
  • All trenches shall be backfilled, covered with topsoil and seeded as soon as the exploration project is completed;
  • Where it is necessary to leave a trench open through the winter, the Recorder under the Mining Act, the Regional Geologist and the District Ranger must be notified;
      – The trench must be guarded and marked,
      – It must be backfilled, covered with topsoil and seeded before the following winter.
  • At the discretion of the Regional Geologist, a trench may be left open permanently for its geological merits, provided it poses no hazard to humans or wildlife, (i.e. sloped walls and no standing water.)
  • Trenching for mineral exploration purposes is not permitted within Zones A and B of a designated Wellfield Protected Area
 

Conditions for Uranium Exploration

Definitions:

"intrusive exploration" refers to drilling and trenching and does not include geochemical or geophysical surveys, stream or soil sampling or general prospecting.

"residential building" refers to the principle dwelling in which people live (ie. house, apartment building, rooming or boarding house, mobile home, nursing home, senior citizen's home, etc.).

"institutional building", buildings devoted to the work of organized establishments, foundations, societies, or the like (eg. hospitals, schools, stores, etc.).

  • Uranium exploration, uranium extraction and uranium mining operations are no longer permitted in designated watersheds or wellfields, used as a source of water for a public water supply system;
  • Prospecting or staking for uranium minerals shall not take place within municipalities (cities, town or villages) as defined within section 1 of the Municipalities Act;
  • Intrusive uranium exploration or mine development work that damages or interferes with the use and enjoyment of the land shall not take place on land defined as residential under the Assessment Act without the landowner's permission, however, this will not include industrial freehold or Crown land;
  • Intrusive uranium exploration or development shall not take place within 300 metres of residential or institutional buildings.

When trenching or drilling for uranium is undertaken or where uranium may be encountered during exploration for other minerals:

  • Following the backfilling of a trench, a radiometric survey must be conducted to ensure that radiation is reduced to background levels for the area. When material is found to exceed background levels, the Recorder must be contacted for review and approval of handling and reclamation procedures;
  • For drill holes that encounter uranium mineralization, with measurable radioactivity above local background levels, drill mud solids and cuttings are to be collected and returned down the drill hole, following which, the drill hole shall be grouted with bentonite along their entire length (Note: the company shall note where the depth at which water bearing zones are encountered to ensure that drill cuttings are not placed adjacent to these zones);
  • Drill core with uranium mineralization or measurable radioactivity (as noted by visible inspection and logging, radiometric readings, or laboratory analysis) shall be noted by clearly marking on the outside of the associated core box with yellow paint markings;
  • Core with uranium mineralization or measurable radioactivity shall be stored in secured areas or buildings to prevent public access;
  • Decommissioning of core storage areas shall require that gamma radiation levels measured at 1 metre from the surface for a storage area should be reduced to 1.0 μSv and in no instance will the level be allowed to exceed 2.5 μSv. When core is found to exceed these levels then the Recorder must be contacted for review and approval of handling procedures.

 

Site Reclamation

Drill sites, trenches and access roads shall be reclaimed and rehabilitated by removing all equipment, material and debris; and re-contouring of the ground surface to approximate original ground conditions and to prevent soil erosion. Re-seeding with a highway mix grass may be required if active ground stabilization is required.

 

Reporting

Note: All drill hole collars shall be surveyed using a GPS instrument, measuring its latitude and longitude.

A brief “Drill Hole Report” shall be submitted to the Recorder within 7 days after completing a drill hole, with the following information:

  • The drill hole location as measured by GPS;
  • The dip, azimuth, and depth of the hole; the name of the property owner, the PID number of the property;
  • Whether any uranium mineralization was encountered while drilling;
  • Whether the drill hole encountered artesian flowing groundwater conditions;
  • Whether the drill hole encountered multiple water bearing zones and the depth to these zones;
  • The abandonment details of the drill hole including recorded volumes of bentonite used if applicable; and
  • The surface reclamation undertaken

 

 

Watercourse Alteration Permit

A watercourse alteration permit is required if the work involves any of the following within a wetland or watercourse or within 30 m of a wetland or the bank of a watercourse:

  • Disturbance of ground;
  • Operation of machinery on the bed of a watercourse other than at a designated fording place;
  • Deposit or removal of materials (including trees, vegetation, sand, gravel, rock, topsoil); or
  • Water withdrawal from a watercourse.

Water withdrawal at a rate of less than 45 Litres per minute for drilling exploration work does not require a permit provided permission has been received from the Recorder to proceed with the work.

 

Hazardous Materials

Hazardous materials, petroleum, oil and lubricants (POL) must not be stored or handled within 30 m of a watercourse or wetland. Basic clean up materials should be kept on site. Following completion of operations, all hazardous materials, POL must be removed from the site and disposed of at an approved facility.

 

Special Notes

Companies should be aware of the following notification and reporting requirements between the Department of Energy and Resource Developments and the Department of Environment and Local Government:

  • Prior to conducting any exploration activities, the Recorder will provide advance notification to the Manager of the Project Assessment Section and the Director of the Regional Office of the Department of the Environment and Local Government.
  • Prior to conducting any in ground mineral exploration work (e.g. drilling or trenching) in a designated Watershed Protected Area, the Recorder shall provide advance notification to the Manager of the Project Assessment Section. Note: Any in ground mineral exploration activity within a designated Watershed Protected Area will require approval from the Department of Environment.
  • The Recorder will provide a copy of the drill report to the Manager of the Project Assessment Section