Island Copper Mine, Vancouver Island

Island Copper was an open pit mine located near Port Hardy at the northern end of Vancouver Island. At its peak operating capacity the mine employed almost 1000 people. The bottom of the pit was 1320 ft deep (below sea level) at the end of the mine’s life. At the time, this was the lowest point on earth replacing the former lowest point which was adjacent to the Dead Sea. The tailings from the mine were discharged into Rupert Inlet. The mine was particularly close to the ocean and this required the construction of a large wall to maintain the safety of the pit. The pit was flooded at the conclusion of mining in 1996. Read more here and here. See a video of the mine prior to flooding here. Click here to download the CoastView app and explore Rupert Inlet.