DFO, NEB to inspect Trans Mountain site this week after reported sediment spill

Burnaby Now

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Water gathers near a Silver Creek tributary at the Northeast area of Trans Mountain tank farm in Burnaby.
Photograph By JOHN PREISSL, CONTRIBUTED

This story has been updated from the original version.

Federal and provincial environmental officials are investigating the reported sediment spill into Silver Creek on April 13 and are scheduled to inspect the Trans Mountain terminal site in Burnaby this week.

Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO), the B.C. Ministry of Environment and a representative from the National Energy Board will conduct a joint site visit this week, according to an email statement sent to the NOW by the DFO. A member of the Indigenous Advisory and Monitoring Committee will also attend, according to the NEB.

The provincial ministry is leading the investigation, and ministry staff completed a site visit with Trans Mountain last week. They did not find any sediment in the creek on their initial review.

That investigation found Trans Mountain had installed erosion and sediment control measures and sumps for water collection near Silver Creek tributaries. Gravel extended along the road adjacent to them, and straw had been placed in locations with exposed soil. They also found an extension of sediment fencing was installed.

Water samples, too, met B.C. water quality guidelines, and the City of Burnaby found the streams clear shortly after the report was made, they said.

Trans Mountain is also evaluating its erosion and sediment control plan following the report. The company says no problems were identified by the inspection, and the company will continue its environmental monitoring plans.

“Trans Mountain personnel on site did not observe a sedimentation/erosion issue associated with our site or activities as described in the public report,” wrote Trans Mountain in an email. “It is important to note that activities at the site are guided by an Erosion and Sediment Control Plan and overseen by an environmental inspector. All required environmental approvals are in place to complete the work.”

An earlier version of this story indicated the environment ministry conducted an inspection with John Preissl, instead of with Trans Mountain. We apologize for the error.

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