Aggregate Division

BURNCO produces and sells a broad range of aggregate products from 17 gravel pits in British Columbia, Alberta and Texas.

Aggregate Overview

The division is divided into four main areas:

The Property Department locates, permits and oversees the development of all pits. It ensures BURNCO’s compliance with increasing government regulations and also sets new standards for minimizing environmental concerns, land use conflicts and reclamation.

Production Operations utilize our portable and stationary crushing and washing plants to process aggregate from raw pit run material into a vast array of products.

Sales Operations market the aggregate material to contractors, government and other BURNCO Divisions.

The Quality Assurance Department constantly monitors and tests all aggregate products, whether it be road gravel, pipe bedding rock or concrete and asphalt aggregate. Our knowledgeable and experienced professionals ensure all BURNCO aggregate products comply with the wide range of specifications for every application.

Aggregate & Your Community

What is Aggregate?

Aggregate is the word used to describe sand, rocks, gravel, crushed stone and shale.

Sand and gravel (aggregate) are vital non-renewable, basic construction materials used extensively in the building of roads, bridges, offices, residences and virtually all other commercial, industrial, and public works construction. Without aggregate the construction of these essential facilities would not be economically feasible.

Sand and gravel deposits occur in a limited number of locations and both quality and quantity of particular sites vary widely. The timely extraction of this resource prior to intensive surface development is necessary to prevent shutting in developable aggregate reserves, thus allowing future generations to successfully and economically meet the public and private construction requirements of tomorrow. 

Where is Aggregate Used?

Sand is used at the neighborhood playground and on the golf course.

Aggregate was used to construct the basement of your home, your driveway, sidewalks and patio.

Sand and gravel is used on your local baseball diamonds and bike trails.

Sand and other aggregate is spread on slippery roads in winter to make them safer.

Aggregate was used to build your kids' school, your community centre, and probably the building you work in.

You drive, bike, or walk to and from work on thousands of tonnes of aggregate every day .

On average, every Canadian uses 10 to 14 tonnes of aggregate each year – that's one full tandem truckload per person!

Why Society Should Value Aggregate

We can't forget that aggregate is a non-renewable resource. Once land is developed, access to underlying aggregate is forever lost on that site.

If an aggregate resource is not developed in our area, aggregate materials will have to be hauled by truck from another site – one that could be many more kilometres away.

The farther a community needs to travel to find sources of aggregates for all types of construction, the more expensive the aggregate becomes.

What that means to you, the consumer, is that it will cost more to pave your driveway, to build a house or a school, or even to fill your child's sand box. As well, your community will be subjected to increased vehicle emissions from increased fuel use, and more wear and tear on local roads and highways all resulting from increased truck traffic hauling the aggregate from outside your local area.

Click here to read a related article. 

Your Community Will Be Protected

The aggregate mining industry is very tightly regulated and companies that mine aggregate must adhere to many environmental laws and regulations, including:

Equivalent Land Capability – Land must be reclaimed to a capability equal or better than prior to mining. This means your community benefits twice – first, with the use of local gravel, which is more economical and second, the community gets to enjoy the reclaimed land as a park, golf course, community centre, farm land, or many other uses.

Conservation and Reclamation Planning – Specific plans must be submitted to various government agencies regarding development details, conservation strategies, and reclamation plans for all aggregate mining proposals.

Operating Conditions – Your municipal district or county will mandate the manner in which we manage and operate the aggregate pit including hauling routes, hours of operation, etc.

Did You Know?

  • A typical single family home uses about 160 tonnes (that's about 12 truck load) of gravel. You'll find it beneath the basement floor, as drainage rock around the foundation to prevent basement flooding, in the concrete walls, floors, steps, sidewalk, patio and driveway. Even your home's windows and stucco siding are made with sand!
  • Toothpaste contains talc, which is a product of aggregate mining.
  • Construction of the Father Michael Troy School in Edmonton, completed in 2003, required 29,000 tonnes of aggregate. Aggregate is needed for the concrete walls, floors, sidewalks, parking areas and any mortar work.
  • In one year, Alberta uses enough aggregate to build a wall around the entire province (that's 3,990 km), measuring 3.8 metres (12.5 ft) high by 1 metre (3.3 ft) thick!
  • Construction of a tall office tower uses more than 100,000 tonnes of aggregate, mainly in the concrete.
  • Gravel mining is a necessary but temporary use of land. You may also be surprised to learn that many of Alberta's golf courses, lakes, and parks, were once aggregate mining sites.