Mount Milligan is a copper-gold mine located 155km northwest of Prince George. It is the first major new metals mine to have been built in British Columbia in the last ten years. The mine produces 60,000 tonnes per day and has a small carbon footprint.
The project consisted of building the mine and the refining building from the ground up. Taking two years to complete from start to finish, Houle installed all electrical instrumentation for this project, along with data networks and security systems. Over 320 electricians were employed by Houle to complete Houle’s scope of work. The project features a 31,514 horsepower mill, two 17,400 horsepower ball mills, one km long conveyor and numerous smaller ones, and over 259,000 metres of teck cable installed.
The location of the mine presented many challenges. Being 155km away from Prince George meant figuring out how to transport crew members and materials three hours onto site via a logging road. Having a crew from all regions of Canada posed transportation challenges as well. Everything had to be extremely well organized in order to ensure everything and everyone was on-site at the right time.
Because the site is in northern British Columbia, snow covered the ground six months of the year. The team had to work around the extreme weather conditions to ensure the snow didn’t adversely affect the project schedule. The crew also had to work around a mine site that posed some hazardous conditions. There was zero tolerance for safety infractions.
Houle completed the job under extreme conditions and scheduling delays. More than five million hours was recorded by all trades without a lost time injury, earning all on-site trades the John Ash Safety Award. Due to the nature of the work performed, Houle acquired lots of new tools and equipment as a result of the project, tools and equipment that can be used for future projects of this magnitude.