Tuesday, March 25, 2014

Environment News

Houston, We've Got a Problem     

Environment Canada won't release Cannor Rd details without FOI

Staff/Photo by Ian Stephen, WaterWealth Project


A photo taken by Ian Stephen shows a hay bale set up to try and stop seepage from the containment ditch.


ore often than not, what community heroes do goes unsung. Sometimes they task themselves with magnanimous projects.


Such is the case with Ian Stephen from the WaterWealth Project in Chilliwack, who is currently tackling a leachate issue plaguing a log sort facility located on Cannor Rd.


His concern is the substance is getting into a nearby creek and the adjacent wetland habitat.


According to Wikipedia, leachate is "any liquid material that drains from land or stockpiled material and contains significantly elevated concentrations of undesirable material derived from the material that it has passed through."


But, so far, no one knows exactly what this black, oily-looking substance on Cannor Rd. is, or how harmful it is to the environment.


In the Cannor Rd. case, the leachate has been escaping the containment ditch. Hay bales were set up in an attempt to absorb and stem the seepage


Residents out walking are alarmed when they come across it and at least one has called the fire department thinking it's an oil spill.


Stephen says that so far there have been no sightings of dead birds in the area.


"I haven't seen anything live in the water around there either though," he said.


According to Stephen, when he called Environment Canada to ask if testing had been done and to find out the results, he was told the agency couldn't tell him anything and that if he wanted to know, he would have to file a Freedom of Information request.


Stephen confirmed he also contacted BC Emergency Management , the Department of Fisheries and Oceans and the Ministry of Environment.


For more information and to see photos, he has chronicled his work online here.



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