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Environmental conditions still to be met for Crémaillère Harbour port

Dan Villeneuve, CEO and president of Great Northern Port Inc.
Dan Villeneuve, CEO and president of Great Northern Port Inc. - SaltWire File Photo

CEO projects spring 2020 start date

ST. ANTHONY, N.L. —

The CEO of Great Northern Port says more preliminary work is needed before construction can start on the marine port at Crémaillère Harbour.
“Because of the time frame it takes to get this approval, we’re probably looking at the spring of 2020 for heavy stuff to be done,” said Dan Villeneuve, CEO and president of the company, who spoke with The Northern Pen on Thursday, June 27.
On June 19, the Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment released the company’s environmental preview report (EPR) from further environmental assessment, subject to four conditions.
Three conditions listed were also noted as deficiencies in the company’s original EPR that was rejected in February.
Those conditions require the company to, A) inform the Department of Municipal Affairs and Environment “of test results identifying the acid-generating potential of the ore to be stored”; B) “conduct surveys for avifauna such as the short-eared owl”; and C) “submit, to the satisfaction of the Department of Transportation and Works, a traffic statement which outlines the projected volumes of traffic and types of vehicles expected along with any necessary road construction or upgrades as a result of this development.”
The fourth condition requires the company to submit an Environmental Protection Plan (EPP) for each of the three phases of the project. This has to be submitted before construction can start.
“Each EPP shall describe all environmental protection and mitigation measures that will be applied during the construction and operation of the facilities and infrastructure associated with that phase of the project,” said the decision letter.
Nevertheless, Villeneuve is optimistic the company can meet these conditions.
He says the company has contracted engineering groups to identify the acid-generating potential of the ore to be stored, environmental experts to address the avifauna concern and a third-party consultant to outline projected traffic volume.
He says each contractor is employed in the province and the work has already begun.
Villeneuve was understanding of why the work needs to be done and commended the department for its thoroughness, professionalism and helpfulness.
“We have the opportunity with this development so that we do find the balance between the economics and the ecology,” he said. “The only way we can do that is with good science, good practices and good execution.”

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