Coordinated Authorizations Process
The coordinated authorizations process is defined by four overarching stages: pre-application, screening, review, drafting and decision. The Major Mines Authorizations Guide (PDF, 1.7MB) provides detailed information on the process.
Before the application is submitted, the proponent works with government, Indigenous nations and stakeholders to introduce the proposed project. The goal of the pre-application stage is to ensure proponents clearly understand requirements and responsibilities to submit a high-quality and complete application; additionally, the pre-application stage helps ministries, Indigenous nations, and other reviewers to prepare and workplan for the screening and review stages.
Proponents are encouraged to engage in early outreach to local, provincial and federal governments, local communities, and potentially affected Indigenous nations. Outreach should start well before the proponent enters the coordinated authorizations process, during advanced exploration and project planning.
After pre-application activities are complete, the proponent submits an application package that meets the application requirements identified in the pre-application stage. The purpose of the screening stage is to identify significant gaps within the application, and to ensure that the application is ready for detailed review by the Mine Review Committee.
The purpose of the review stage is for all members of the Mine Review Committee to complete a detailed review of the application and its supporting documents. Once an application package is accepted into the review phase of the coordinated authorization process, the EMLI project lead will inform the proponent that the application was screened and accepted for review. The review period is characterized by rounds of review in which MRC reviewers provide comments and the proponent provides responses to those comments. There are typically two to three rounds of review with the goal of resolving all questions, concerns, and issues that arise.
Formal Indigenous consultation is conducted during the review phase. While Indigenous nations are involved throughout the process, the Province sends referral letters to Indigenous nations upon receipt and acceptance of the application. This process may be prescribed by consultation agreements between B.C. and specific Indigenous nations.
Public engagement may also be required during the review period. Public engagement requirements should be discussed and confirmed during the pre-application phase. Proponents are encouraged to engage the public by hosting informational open houses, making information available online, and other opportunities as appropriate.
The project may advance to drafting once all issues raised during the review period are resolved, identified as permit conditions, or otherwise addressed. This stage involves the drafting of permits (or permit amendments) and the documents that accompany them for consideration by Statutory Decision Makers.
Provincial ministries work closely with each other, Indigenous nations, and proponents to understand the specific nature, scope, timing, and impacts of coordinated projects. Mining projects can involve a wide range of authorization requirements, and most often include:
Some parts of the coordinated authorizations process are coordinated among Provincial ministries, while others are not. The table below provides an overview as to what is and what is not coordinated.