Environment commissioner says liability for northern contaminated sites growing

By Alessia Passafiume  The Canadian Press Ottawa’s slow progress to remediate contaminated sites in the North is leaving Indigenous Peoples at risk and raising the government’s own financial liability for the polluted  areas, environment commissioner Jerry DeMarco said Tuesday in a new audit. DeMarco’s probe found that the government’s liability for contaminated sites increased by $7 billion since 2005, when the government launched its plan to remediate and reclaim abandoned mines. More than 60 per cent of that liability is in the North. “After 20 years, there is still much work needed to reduce financial liability related to contaminated sites and to lower environmental and human health risks for current and future generations,” said DeMarco. “As well, the government needs to take urgent action to advance socio-economic benefits, including employment…

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