Month: March 2014

Nipigon Bay PAC Meeting – April 9th

Nipigon River near the Nipigon River Highway Bridge.
The Nipigon River near the Nipigon River Highway Bridge. The Nipigon River is the largest river entering the Great Lakes.

The Public Advisory Committee (PAC) to the Nipigon Bay Remedial Action Plan, or cleanup plan, met at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, April 9th in the Rotary Room of the Nipigon District Hospital. The meeting featured a presentation by Rick DeCal of the Ontario Ministry of Transportation about stormwater drainage at the new Nipigon River Bridge.

Go to the meeting agenda, complete information package and meeting minutes.

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

North Harbour Contamination – How to Clean up?

Remedial Action Plan Public Advisory Committee Meeting - March 19, 2014 - Focus: options for cleanup of mercury contamination in Thunder Bay Harbour.
March 19, 2014, Lakehead University – Members of the Public Advisory Committee to the Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan, interested members of the public, media representatives and personnel from Environment Canada and the Ontario Ministry of the Environment listen to options for cleanup of mercury contamination in Thunder Bay Harbour. The presentation on cleanup options was made by Cole Engineering representative Mark Bassingthwaite. Click the photo for more pictures of the meeting. All photos by Lauren Stoot/infosuperior.com.

How should mercury contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour be cleaned up? This was the only item on the agenda at the 7 p.m., March 19th meeting of the Public Advisory Committee (PAC) to the Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan (RAP), or harbour cleanup plan. The meeting took place at Lakehead University and was attended by Public Advisory Committee members and many interested members of the public for a total of just over 50 people.

Key information:

  • the harbour location in question is adjacent to a former paper mill near Current River mouth and the Shipyards.
  • the area of highest contamination is in the water and is approximately 55 acres or 22 hectares in size
  • mercury is mixed with a thick layer of pulpy fiber suspended in harbour water
  • there is approximately 350,000 cubic metres of contaminated material.

Related documents and information:

If you are unable to attend the March 19th Remedial Action Plan Public Advisory Committee meeting at Lakehead University, EcoSuperior is hosting a public information session the next day, March 20, 2014 between 4:00-8:00 PM at the Prince Arthur Waterfront Hotel and Suites. Cole Engineering will be in attendance to present the results of their “Sediment Management Options Study.” This study outlines options for cleanup of mercury-contaminated sediment in the north portion of Thunder Bay Harbour. Click here for more information about this March 20th event.

 

 

 

 

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

Podcast Series – March Edition – Jamie Saunders – North Harbour Clean-up

Monday, March 10th 2014

MARCH EDITION

 

Jamie Saunders, North Harbour Clean-Up Representative speaks to Jim Bailey, RAP Coordinator about the proposed clean-up plans for the Thunder Bay North Harbour site.
Jamie Saunders of EcoSuperior speaks to Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan Coordinator Jim Bailey of Lakehead University about potential options for cleanup of contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour.

For the March, 2014 edition of InfoSuperior’s podcast, or audio interview series, Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan Coordinator Jim Bailey speaks with Jamie Saunders of EcoSuperior, a representative of the North Harbour Steering Committee. This committee is  exploring methods for dealing with mercury contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour. The interview deals with questions like how this harbour site became contaminated in the first place, who is working to bring about cleanup, how serious is the contamination and what are the next steps in resolving this issue.

To listen to the interview, please click the above photo!

Related: How should mercury contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour be cleaned up? This will be the only item on the agenda at the 7 p.m., March 19th meeting of the Public Advisory Committee (PAC) to the Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan (RAP), or harbour cleanup plan. The meeting takes place in Room 1022 of the Ryan Building at Lakehead University. Evening parking at Lakehead University is free of charge and all PAC meetings are open to the public and free of charge. The focus of the meeting will be a presentation and input about options for dealing with contaminated sediment in Thunder Bay Harbour.

A complete overview about Thunder Bay North Harbour contamination can be accessed here.

Check out archived podcast interviews here.

See photos from the Thunder Bay North Harbour site below.

A group of technicians complete field sampling in the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders)
A group of technicians complete field sampling at the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).

 

Example of pulpy fibrous material which contaminates Thunder Bay North Harbour (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders).
A thick layer of pulpy fibrous material like this sample above is suspended in the water at the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).

 

A former paper mill located in the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders)
A former paper mill located on the shorline near the Thunder Bay North Harbour site. The contaminated site is in the water near the mouth of the Current River and the shipyards and just offshore from this former mill (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).
It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

State of the Great Lakes 2011 Report

The “State of the Great Lakes 2011 Report” is now available online and includes an overview of the Great Lakes conditions, issues facing the Great Lakes and more than 50 detailed indicator reports written by topic experts from dozens of different organizations.

To access the report, please click HERE.

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

First two Beneficial Uses restored at St. Marys River Area of Concern

Exciting news for the St. Mary’s Binational Area of Concern

The Michigan Office of the Great Lakes today announced the removal of two Beneficial Use Impairments from Michigan’s side of the binational St. Marys River Area of Concern. The Degradation of Aesthetics BUI and Bird or Animal Deformities or Reproductive Problems BUI have been removed from the list of impairments associated with the site.
The St. Marys River is one of Michigan’s 14 federally designated Great Lakes AOCs, which suffer from severe environmental degradation, primarily from industrial and municipal wastes. The AOC extends the entire length of the St. Marys River, from Lake Superior to Lake Huron, and forms the international border between Michigan’s Eastern Upper Peninsula and the Canadian province of Ontario.
Historical issues with excessive nutrients, elevated levels of bacteria, trace organic compounds, contaminated sediments and heavy metals contributed to some of the area’s 10 total BUIs.
Recent assessments concluded that the historical conditions that contributed to these two impairments no longer exist. Wildlife nesting and foraging at the site are no longer adversely affected by exposure to PCB, DDE or dioxin. In addition, aesthetic conditions described in historical documents are no longer present.
The restoration of these first two beneficial uses at the AOC marks a significant milestone on the path toward environmental recovery.
At this time, eight additional beneficial uses remain listed as impaired for the St. Marys River. The Office of the Great Lakes remains committed to continue to work collaboratively with local, state, federal and Canadian stakeholders to further restore the area.
For additional information on the Michigan’s AOC program, visit www.michigan.gov/deqaocprogram.
It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

5 Ways Mountaintop Removal Affects Streams

Brandon Peoples, a fisheries scientist and contributor for The Fisheries Blog recently published an article about the effects of mining related mountaintop removal on streams into 5 main reasons:

  • Headwater streams are entirely removed
  • Water quality changes dramatically
  • Water is often acutely toxic to organisms
  • Harmful levels of selenium causes deformities and death
  • Biotic communities are degraded

Read the article HERE

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

New Permits to Allow Fish Net Pens in Wisconsin

A recent article in the Great Lakes Echo written by Alan League investigates the recent proposal by the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources to allow nonprofit groups to place net pens in Lake Michigan, Lake Superior and associated tributaries.  This initiative would be in hopes to increase fish populations for recreational anglers.

See HERE for the article.

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

Minnesota Mystery: What’s Killing the Moose?

A recent article in the NY Times, written by Brent McDonald discusses the recent decline of moose in Minnesota and speculates potential causes. Michelle Carstensen, the lead for the moose mortality project operated by the Minnesota Department of Natural Resources has many concerns.

“If we can really pinpoint the overlying cause, then can we even do anything about it? Or are we really just documenting a species on its way out of our state?”

Click HERE to read the article and view the video.

It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone

Podcast Series – March 2014 Edition

MARCH EDITION
Monday, March 10th 2014

Jamie Saunders, North Harbour Clean-Up Representative speaks to Jim Bailey, RAP Coordinator about the proposed clean-up plans for the Thunder Bay North Harbour site.
Jamie Saunders of EcoSuperior speaks to Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan Coordinator Jim Bailey of Lakehead University about potential options for cleanup of contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour.

For the March, 2014 edition of InfoSuperior’s podcast, or audio interview series, Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan Coordinator Jim Bailey speaks with Jamie Saunders of EcoSuperior, a representative of the North Harbour Steering Committee. This committee is exploring methods for dealing with mercury contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour. The interview deals with questions like how this harbour site became contaminated in the first place, who is working to bring about cleanup, how serious is the contamination and what are the next steps in resolving this issue.

To listen to the interview, please click the above photo!

Related: How should mercury contamination in the northeast portion of Thunder Bay Harbour be cleaned up? This will be the only item on the agenda at the 7 p.m., March 19th meeting of the Public Advisory Committee (PAC) to the Thunder Bay Remedial Action Plan (RAP), or harbour cleanup plan. The meeting takes place in Room 1022 of the Ryan Building at Lakehead University. Evening parking at Lakehead University is free of charge and all PAC meetings are open to the public and free of charge. The focus of the meeting will be a presentation and input about options for dealing with contaminated sediment in Thunder Bay Harbour.

A complete overview about Thunder Bay North Harbour contamination can be accessed here.

See photos from the Thunder Bay North Harbour site below.

A group of technicians complete field sampling in the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders)
A group of technicians complete field sampling at the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).

 

Example of pulpy fibrous material which contaminates Thunder Bay North Harbour (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders).
A thick layer of pulpy fibrous material like this sample above is suspended in the water at the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).

 

A former paper mill located in the Thunder Bay North Harbour site (Courtesy of Jamie Saunders)
A former paper mill on the shorline near the Thunder Bay North Harbour site. The contaminated site is in the water near the mouth of the Current River and the shipyards and just offshore from this former mill (photo courtesy of Jamie Saunders, EcoSuperior).
It's only fair to share...Share on FacebookTweet about this on TwitterShare on Google+Share on TumblrPrint this pageEmail this to someone