Adequacy of environmental risk assessment of industrial facility in Port Alberni, British Columbia

Petition: 394

Issue(s): Air quality, biological diversity, environmental assessment, human/environmental health, toxic substances

Petitioner(s): Resident of Canada

Petitioner Location(s): Port Alberni, British Columbia

Date Received: 20 July 2016

Status: Completed—Response(s) to petition received

Summary: The petition raises concerns about the operations of an industrial facility in Port Alberni, located on Vancouver Island, British Columbia. The petition mentions that the industrial facility started operations in 2015 on federal land under the jurisdiction of the Port Alberni Port Authority. The petition asserts that the facility is releasing toxic emissions affecting human health, particularly of local residents, and mentions that the facility had to shut down operations several times.

The petition questions the federal risk assessment process for the facility and asks for the criteria and data used by the Port Authority and Transport Canada to determine the facility’s economic and environmental sustainability. The petition asks whether other federal authorities were consulted during the process. The petition cites that the Port Authority has to comply with the Canada Marine Act and the Port Authorities Operations Regulations. Other concerns raised by the petition relate to the quality of air and of water in the vicinity, and the potential impacts on fish and birds. The petition also asks whether monitoring data is available.

The petition questions whether expertise and skills at Transport Canada and other federal departments are used to assess the current situation about toxic emissions.

Federal departments responsible for reply: Environment and Climate Change Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Health Canada, Transport Canada