Fisheries

04/11/16
Author: 
Justine Hunter
The Heiltsuk Nation, which relies on beaches near the tug accident site, has called the situation a disaster. (April Bencze/Heiltsuk Nation)

Audio recordings reveal how first responders struggled to get a clear picture of an unfolding disaster, reports Justine Hunter

VICTORIA The Globe and Mail Last updated: Friday, Nov. 04, 2016 12:38PM EDT

[audio available online]

31/10/16
Author: 
Mark Hume
The Heiltsuk Nation, which relies on beaches near the tug accident site, has called the situation a disaster. (April Bencze/Heiltsuk Nation)

Crews fighting to contain fuel leaking from a sunken tug near Bella Bella, B.C., have had to deal with just the kind of conditions predicted in a spill response analysis filed with the National Energy Board in the Trans Mountain pipeline hearings.

That analysis warned that if an oil spill occurred on the West Coast during winter months, high winds, turbulent seas and delays in response time could combine to make it impossible for crews to recover more than 15 per cent of spilled oil.

28/10/16
Author: 
Dogwood Initiative Today at Bella Bella’s only grocery store, a jug of milk costs $7.10 (and expires in a few days). A package of frozen chicken drumsticks goes for $11.89 and a Christmas ham is $75.00. Shampoo, tampons and fresh produce, when available,
Dogwood Initiative
27/10/16
Author: 
Heiltsuk Communications

For Immediate Release

Heiltsuk infuriated by Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc’s statement on diesel spill

October 26, 2016 (Bella Bella) – A statement just released by Canada’s fisheries minister has left Heiltsuk Chief Councillor Marilyn Slett angered and dismayed.

27/10/16
Author: 
Heiltsuk Communications

For Immediate Release

Heiltsuk infuriated by Fisheries Minister Dominic LeBlanc’s statement on diesel spill

October 26, 2016 (Bella Bella) – A statement just released by Canada’s fisheries minister has left Heiltsuk Chief Councillor Marilyn Slett angered and dismayed.

25/10/16
Author: 
Heiltsuk Communications

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Booms leaking diesel, contaminating beaches in Heiltsuk Territory

October 25, 2016 (Bella Bella) – Crews continue to attempt to recover spilled diesel from contaminated beaches near Gale Creek/'Qvúqvái today as diesel has been discovered leaking from booms that broke Saturday and washed ashore.

 

24/10/16
Author: 
Mark Hume
Fuel slicks spread around the tug Nathan E. Stewart, stranded on a reef it struck. (Marilyn Slett)

Cleanup and salvage efforts have been hampered by storms on the British Columbia coast, where a sunken tug continues to leak fuel 11 days after it ran aground near Bella Bella, in the Great Bear Rainforest.

Matt Woodruff, information officer with the industry-funded unified command group that is handling the operation, said fuel spill containment booms failed at one point, allowing slicks to escape from around the grounded tug, Nathan E. Stewart.

23/10/16
Author: 
Heiltsuk Communications Coordinator

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

 

HEILTSUK IN SHOCK AS CRITICAL BARRIER
CONTAINING SPILL BREAKS FREE

 

 

Bella Bella (October 22, 2016) –– Heiltsuk Chief Marilyn Slett says her community is in a state of shock today as spilled diesel oil has broken free of barriers to contain it and weather worsens.

 

17/10/16
Author: 
Bethany Lindsay
A tug and barge that carries petroleum products to and from Alaska through B.C.'s Inside Passage has run aground near Bella Bella. The Canadian Coast Guard confirms the Nathan E. Stewart, an articulated tug/barge owned by the Texas-based Kirby Corporation, ran aground at Edge Reef in Seaforth Channel just after 1 a.m. Thursday. The coast guard says the 287-foot long fuel barge was empty, but the 100-foot tug itself is leaking diesel fuel. People on the scene at noon said that the tug was half under water an

A little more than a year ago, B.C. activist Ingmar Lee told a reporter that the petroleum-hauling vessel Nathan E. Stewart was a “disaster waiting to happen.”

Early Wednesday morning, that fear was realized when the American-owned articulated tug and barge ran aground near Bella Bella. Although the barge was empty after dropping off its cargo in Alaska, the tugboat began leaking fuel into the water, threatening the traditional clam fisheries of the Heiltsuk First Nation. 

“It’s unfortunately a terrible thing to see it sunk there,” Lee said Thursday.

04/10/16
Author: 
Stephen Hume:
The face of the tailings dump of a long-abandoned mine near the Jordan River is crusted with green scabs. PNG

The site where the Pacheedaht people originated — their Garden of Eden — is stunning.

The Jordan River exits a 500-metre-deep canyon, then tumbles toward the sea through a jumble of immense boulders polished as smooth as beach pebbles.

It was here, about 70 kilometres west of Victoria, in a past so ancient it predates legends of a great flood that inundated the world, that the Pacheedaht took their name from foam on the river.

Today, there’s still foam on the river. It signals not the birth of a people, but the death of their river.

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