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Canada unveils new coastal oil spill protection plan

08 November 2016

The Canadian Government will invest $1.5 billion to improve response to oil spills and other environmental emergencies along its coastlines, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced on November 7. The Ocean Protection Plan is designed to counter fuel spills in the Pacific, Atlantic and Arctic oceans.

Exxon Valdez - Image: NOAA
Exxon Valdez - Image: NOAA

Trudeau said the funding over five years will include creating a marine safety system, restoring marine ecosystems and research into oil spill cleanup methods. The plan also covers increased coast guard capacity, new rescue stations, tougher rules for businesses that pollute on the coasts, and Indigenous community response teams, said Trudeau.

The announcement, made with Transport Minister Marc Garneau, comes after the minister spent Sunday touring a site on British Columbia's Central Coast at Bella Bella, where a tugboat ran aground and sank more than three weeks ago, releasing thousands of litres of diesel and lubricants into the water.

Spill response efforts there have failed to contain an estimated 110,000 litres of diesel and other petroleum products.

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