Northern Pulp to submit effluent treatment plan by end of January
January 7, 2019 – Northern Pulp intends to submit its plan for the replacement of its Boat Harbour effluent treatment facility by the end of January to Nova Scotia's Department of Environment, which will kick-start the province's own environmental assessment.
The Chronicle Herald, a Halifax paper, reports that the plan will be submitted using existing survey data instead of the new data the mill intended to use before its survey work was blocked by local fishermen for two months.
Kathy Cloutier, director of communications for Northern Pulp's parent company Paper Excellence, told The Chronicle Herald that the mill is still working to complete its survey work, but in the event that it doesn't finish, the existing data should be sufficient in articulating why its proposed plan to have treated effluent flow into Northumberland Strait is environmentally sound.
The fishermen say Northern Pulp's plan would be a threat to the environment and their livelihood. In October, they blocked the mill's survey work of the strait using boat barricades, which lasted until an injunction was granted on December 19, 2018.
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The Abercrombie, Nova Scotia–based mill has been ordered by the Nova Scotia government to stop diverting its effluent through the nearby Pictou Landing First Nations reserve, which sees untreated effluent piped into the Boat Harbour facility before being emptied into the strait. The mill was given five years come up with a new plan, with the deadline coming up in January 2020.
Northern Pulp's proposed plan has the effluent treatment on-site at the mill, with a mostly land-based pipeline leading to a terminus at Caribou Point – which the mill says has deep waters to make it more ideal for dilution.
Once the province completes its own environmental assessment, the federal government may still review the plans, which could take months or even years.
Read the full story here.
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