Released on October 31, 2014
Claude Resources Inc. recently pleaded guilty to one charge under the federal Fisheries Act and one charge under Saskatchewan’s Environmental Management and Protection Act in provincial court in La Ronge. The company was ordered to pay a total penalty of $172,000.
The charges stem from an investigation into a spill of approximately 24,000 litres of diesel fuel from a storage tank at the Seabee Mine in January 2013. The gold mine is owned by Claude Resources Inc. and is located approximately 125 kilometres northeast of the town of La Ronge.
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment and Environment Canada conducted a joint investigation into the cause of the spill. Enforcement officials discovered that the diesel fuel storage tank was located on the north shore of Laonil Lake, 35 metres from the shoreline. The spill affected the area along the bank and shoreline, and had to be contained within a boomed area on the lake.
Investigators determined that the tank had been serviced by an uncertified installer and that a connection point failure resulted in the release of the diesel fuel.
Enforcement officials concluded that given the circumstances in this case, the release was preventable and Claude Resources Inc. was subsequently charged.
“It is very important that owners and operators of fuel storage tanks in our province abide by the regulations under The Environmental Management and Protection Act,” Ministry of Environment Compliance and Enforcement Director Ken Aube said. “The ministry strictly regulates the operation of fuel tanks in Saskatchewan to protect human health and our environment.”
“Strong, effective enforcement of Canada's environmental and wildlife protection laws is one of the ways the Government of Canada is acting on its commitment to protect the environment and conserve wildlife species and their habitat,” Environment Canada Chief Enforcement Officer Gord Owen said. “Environment Canada continues to work with provincial and territorial governments to ensure that those who violate the law are held accountable.”
If you suspect environmental, fisheries, wildlife or forestry violations, call your local Ministry of Environment office, Saskatchewan’s toll-free Turn In Poachers line at 1-800-667-7561 or #5555 for SaskTel cellular subscribers, or report a violation online at www.saskatchewan.ca/conservation. You may be eligible for cash rewards from the SaskTip Reward Program.
The Saskatchewan Ministry of Environment provides science-based solutions, compliance and mitigation measures aimed at protecting the environment, safeguarding communities and helping to ensure a better quality of life for all Saskatchewan residents.
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