The Province

Published: Tuesday, January 15, 2008

A group of mining companies announced yesterday it has given more than $20 million to the University of B.C to help it build a new earth-systems science building. The $75-million facility, set to begin construction next year, will house UBC's earth and ocean sciences department.

Goldcorp, Lundin Group and Pan American Silver Corp. are among the industry leaders who have ponied up more than $20 million of the $32.5 million in private-sector funding for the building's construction.

"As an international leader in earth sciences, UBC has helped to shape Vancouver into a world-renowned centre for mineral exploration and development," said Pan American Silver chairman Ross Beaty.

"Vancouver is home to more mineral-resource companies than any other city in the world and further creation of opportunities for future geologists, geophysicists, geochemists and geological engineers is critical to sustaining B.C.'s — and indeed Canada's — minerals industry."

Science faculty dean Simon Peacock said the new building "represents an investment in the future of the Canadian and international mineral exploration communities . . . The ESS Building will provide undergraduate and graduate students a world-class education in the earth sciences."

The building, set to open in 2011, will accommodate the more than 6,000 undergraduate and graduate students currently enrolled in EOS courses.

Donors include Breakwater Resources Ltd., Northern Peru Copper Corp., Catherine McLeod-Seltzer, Global Copper Corp., Ross Beaty, Selwyn Resources Ltd., Imperial Metals Corp., Silver Standard Resources Inc., Silver Wheaton Corp., Northern Dynasty Minerals Ltd. and Western Copper Corp.