A fine of $213,600 has been issued to Coastal GasLink for non-compliance with environmental regulations.
The Environmental Assessment Office (EAO) found the pipeline project has continually failed to meet erosion and sediment-control requirements, which are put in place to protect wetlands and waterways. Failure to meet these requirements can result in damage to important ecosystems, wildlife habitats and lead to poor water quality.
The is the third financial penalty the company has received. The EOA has issued two other penalties for $72,500 in February 2022; and $170,100 in May 2022. The pipeline project has received more than 500 inspections with 37 warnings, and 17 orders.
The EAO and CGL signed an agreement in July 2022 to address ongoing non-compliance with requirements.
“These are not isolated incidents,” said Federico Cerani, of the BC Green Party caucus.
“CGL has demonstrated a reckless, spiteful and dangerous attitude towards laws and regulations. They simply absorb the costs of relatively small fines and continue to destroy ecosystems.”
The party is urging the government to issue a stop-work order on the pipeline.
Coastal GasLink said they “respect the EAO’s role in upholding the high regulatory standards that we are committed to meeting. Those standards represent the exceptional measures in place to safely deliver B.C.’s natural gas to the world while protecting our environment. They are fundamental values for our Indigenous and local community partners, and values that are at our very core as well.”
The company also noted, however, that this fine dates back to problems that were brought to their attention almost a year ago, which they say they have already addressed.
“We took immediate and decisive action to address these issues, which ultimately led to the compliance agreement we signed with the provincial Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy in July 2022,” the company stated.
The 670km pipeline will connect natural gas production facilities west of Dawson Creek to the LNG Canada natural gas export facility in Kitimat.