ROSSLAND, BC, Nov. 6, 2013 /CNW/ - Teck Metals Ltd. was sentenced to pay
$210,000 in British Columbia Provincial Court for offences under the Fisheries Act and the Spill Reporting Regulation of the Environmental Management Act related to a release of sodium hydroxide into the Columbia River.
On March 5, 2011, approximately 350,000 litres of highly caustic
effluent, which is deleterious to fish, was discharged into the
Columbia River through an effluent system at Teck Metals in Trail, BC.
The toxic release occurred following the disposal of a 50% sodium
hydroxide solution into the plant's effluent stream. The unlawful
discharge was not reported to Environment Canada and the Provincial
Emergency Program until several days after the incident.
Environment Canada and the British Columbia Ministry of Environment's
Conservation Officers Service conducted a joint investigation into this
In total, Teck Metals Ltd. has been sentenced to pay $210,000 which has
been allocated as follows:
$5,000 fine for the charge under the Fisheries Act;
$5,000 fine for the charge under the Spill Reporting Regulation of the Environmental Management Act;
$100,000 payable to the Environmental Damages Fund; and
$100,000 payable to the Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation.
Money paid to the Environmental Damages Fund will fund projects specific
to proper management and control of fisheries or fish habitat, or the
conservation and protection of fish or fish habitat in the Kootenay
River or Columbia River watersheds. A preference will be given to
projects in the lower Columbia region (south from Nelson, British
Columbia). The factors the court considered in sentencing included the
culpability of the accused, prior record, acceptance of responsibility,
damage to the environment, and deterrence.
Environment Canada enforcement personnel investigate potential offences
under a number of acts and regulations including the Fisheries Act. They help ensure that companies, governmental entities, as well as
their respective officials, and the general public comply with
legislation and regulations that protect Canada's environment.
The Environmental Damages Fund, which is administered by Environment
Canada, was created in 1995 to provide a mechanism for directing funds
received as a result of fines, court orders and voluntary payments for
the repair of the actual harm done to the environment.
Environment Canada has created a subscription service to help the public
stay current with what the Government of Canada is doing to protect our
natural environment. Subscribing to Environment Canada's Enforcement
Notifications is easy, and free. Sign up today.
SOURCE: Environment Canada
For further information:
Director of Communications
Office of the Minister of the Environment
Environment Canada's Twitter page: http://twitter.com/environmentca
Environment Canada's Facebook page: http://www.facebook.com/environmentcan
(Également offert en français)