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C-NLOPB issues update on South White Rose Extension Drill Centre

From C-NLOPB
Issued March 13, 2019

On January 28, Husky Energy’s plan for plugging of the flowline and recovery of the failed flowline connector at the South White Rose Extension Drill Centre was approved by the C-NLOPB. As indicated in the C-NLOPB’s public update on January 30, this approval was issued following review by Board staff and the Environmental Emergencies Science Table chaired by the National Environmental Emergencies Centre (NEEC) of Environment and Climate Change Canada.

There is a possible window for implementing the plan beginning on Friday, March 15. As Husky, the C-NLOPB and its partner agencies continue to monitor forecasted conditions offshore in anticipation of that possibility, assets and personnel are being mobilized to site. A decision on whether the operation will go ahead is expected on Thursday, March 14.

The priority of the C-NLOPB and partner agencies has always been to ensure that Husky can execute its plan safely and in an environmentally responsible manner. As the lead government agency, the C-NLOPB will monitor Husky’s execution of the approved plan, in close cooperation and consultation with the NEEC, the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS) and the Canadian Coast Guard (CCG).

The approved plan has the following mitigations:

  • Operations are to be conducted during daylight hours and during specific weather conditions that include reduced sea states;

  • Two Remotely Operated Vehicles (ROVs) are to be deployed for work and observation purposes;

  • Aerial and vessel based surveillance are to be in place, with CCG and Eastern Canada Response Corporation (ECRC) observers onboard, prior to the start of operations;

  • Tier 1 Oil Spill Response capability is to be in place for immediate emergency response, in the event there is a release of oil during plugging and recovery operations;

  • Wildlife surveillance by qualified wildlife observers (for birds and marine mammals) is to be in place onboard each vessel authorized for the operation, and will be in regular contact with the CWS;

  • A C-NLOPB Conservation Officer along with staff from the CCG and the ECRC are to be onboard authorized vessels to observe operations; and

  • C-NLOPB staff will also be observing Husky’s onshore monitoring of the recovery operation.

The C-NLOPB continues its investigation into the mid-November incident.

The C-NLOPB will continue to provide updates as further information becomes available.

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