Teck penalized over $200,000 for exceeding pH; money to go to conservation
Teck Trail Operations has been assessed a penalty of $210,000 under the Fisheries Act and the Environmental Management Act. $200,000 of the penalty will be split evenly between the provincial Habitat Conservation Trust Foundation and the federal Environmental Damages Fund. The funds will be used to support habitat conservation within the Kootenay River or Columbia River watersheds.
“At Teck we are committed to meeting high environmental standards and take incidents such as this very seriously,” said Greg Belland, general manager, Trail Operations. “Since the incident, we have taken a number of steps to prevent a reoccurrence including enhancing training and procedures, installing a new treatment system and implementing new control mechanisms to ensure discharge water is within applicable standards.”
The penalty relates to an incident that occurred on March 5, 2011, when approximately 100 to 300 litres of high pH solution was discharged into a drain at our Warfield operation and subsequently drained to the Columbia River, resulting in a permit exceedance. The company entered a guilty plea to one charge under the Fisheries Act and one charge under the Environmental Management Act. A third party study found no indication of impacts on fish or long-term environmental effects from this incident.