All environmental charges are currently before the Court, and have not yet been proven
On March 22, Environment and Climate Change Canada laid a number of charges against Husky Energy Inc. and Husky Oil Operations Limited relating to the July 2016 blended heavy crude-oil spill into North Saskatchewan River near Maidstone, Saskatchewan, according to a Government of Canada press release.
The Husky oil spill into a major Canadian river cut off drinking water supply for two cities was caused by ground movement that buckled a section of pipeline, the company said in a report to the Saskatchewan provincial government.
Roughly 200,000 to 250,000 liters (1,258 to 1,572 barrels) of heavy oil and diluent spilled from the line, running into the North Saskatchewan River.
The Government of Saskatchewan also filed a charge under the Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2010. These charges result from a 19-month joint federal-provincial investigation.
There are a total of ten charges which include one charge under subsection 36(3) of the federal Fisheries Act, one charge under subsection 38(5) of the federal Fisheries Act, six charges under subsection 38(6) of the federal Fisheries Act, one charge under the federal Migratory Birds Convention Act, 1994, and one charge under Saskatchewan’s Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2010.
“Fundamentally, we accept full responsibility for the incident, as we have from the beginning. We deeply regret this happened and we are sorry for the impact it had. We have worked hard every day since to make things right and we have learned from it,” wrote Mel Duvall, media and issues manager with Husky, according to the CBC.
The provincial Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2010 protects the air, land, and water resources of the province through regulating and controlling potentially harmful activities and substances.
The first appearance is scheduled on March 29 at the Lloydminster Provincial Court office.
All charges are currently before the Court, and they have not yet been proven.
Therefore, Environment and Climate Change Canada and Saskatchewan’s Water Security Agency, which has a responsibility for the specific charge under the provincial Environmental Management and Protection Act, 2010, say they will not be commenting further at this time.
Environment and Climate Change Canada is responsible for the administration and enforcement of the pollution prevention provisions of the Fisheries Act, which prohibit the deposit of deleterious substances into water frequented by fish.