Results of routine water sampling in the Port Hope Harbour, where dredging is underway as part of the PHAI cleanup, indicate contaminants are at higher levels than predicted in the project’s environmental assessment.
The environmental assessment anticipated that higher levels of dissolved contaminants would be found in the harbour during dredging, when contaminated sediment was disturbed as it was removed. However, when higher-than-predicted levels of uranium, arsenic, cobalt, copper, iron, lead and silver were detected, CNL paused dredging to conduct additional sampling.
The sampling results were provided to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission; the Ontario Ministry of the Environment, Conservation and Parks, Environment and Climate Change Canada; the Ontario Ministry of Northern Development, Mines, Natural Resources and Forestry; and the Municipality of Port Hope.
Water samples taken in both the Ganaraska River and in Lake Ontario continue to meet Provincial Water Quality Objectives and Canadian Water Quality Guidelines.
As a result of discussions with the regulators, CNL has enhanced its environmental monitoring in the harbour to strengthen the process that verifies there are no impacts from PHAI work to the municipality’s source of drinking water in Lake Ontario.
Dredging has resumed with these enhancements in place. CNL will continue to provide water sample results to the regulators and the municipality.