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Acquisition of Title to Crown-Owned Minerals in British Columbia, Alberta, and Northern Canada

Alec C. Robertson, Proceedings of 19th Annual Rocky Mountain Mineral Law Institute (1973)

This paper is a summary of the laws relating to the acquisition of title to Crown-owned hardrock minerals in the Provinces of Alberta and British Columbia, and in the Yukon and Northwest Territories.

Western Canada owes its hard rock mineral industry to the Canadian Cordillera, a part of the mountainous range extending the length of western North America from Mexico to Alaska. Most of British Columbia and the whole of the Yukon Territory are within the Canadian Cordillera.

Only a small portion of southwestern Alberta touches on the Cordillera and its hard rock mineral industry is inconsequential at the present time. Alberta has been able to survive quite handsomely on its oil and gas industry.

The Northwest Territories is synonymous with northern Canada. It is a vast area representing about one-third of Canada's land mass and extending north of the sixtieth parallel to the northern tip of Ellesmere Island in the Arctic. Its western boundary encroaches on the Canadian Cordillera where tungsten and copper are being produced and where there is considerable exploration [332] activity. Yellowknife is the centre of the mineral industry in the central region of the Northwest Territories which together with the more easterly regions properly belong to the Canadian Shield.