Report shows heavy metals in pulp mill effluent

The test results, taken from soil and seawater samples around the Boat Harbour treatment facility on June 17, 2014, with the assistance of a resident of the Pictou Landing First Nation, show the presence of heavy metals.

The samples were collected by Ian Fraser, a chemist with JIF Consulting for the Clean the Mill Group and tested by Maxxam Environmental Laboratory in Bedford.

"Analytical results clearly indicate the presence of several heavy metals," stated Fraser in the report. "These heavy metals are flowing with Northern Pulp Mill’s waste waters along the course of Boat Harbour."

The report indicates that the presence of mercury suggests a spill may have occurred in the past on soils adjacent to Boat Harbour. Fraser recommends that the source of the mercury needs to be investigated in a timely fashion, between three to six months.

The report doesn’t indicate whether the presence of mercury is directly attributable to Northern Pulp or Canso Chemical’s operations.

Dr. Krawczyk, a former chief of staff at the Aberdeen Hospital and a child and adolescent neuropsychiatrist, said that at this moment, it doesn’t matter who is to blame.

"I’ll use a medical parallel," he said. "If I had a patient with a cut jugular vein, would we stand around and argue while the patient is bleeding trying to figure out who’s responsible for this or do we go after helping the patient to stop the
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Krawczyk agrees with Fraser, noting that time is of the essence in finding the source of mercury.

"You have to deal with it today. At least shut down the effluent from going into the Northumberland Strait. Then begin that long tedious process of biohazard cleanup, which can take 10 to 20 years."

Some of the heavy metals detected include cadmium, lead, nickel, chromium, arsenic, aluminum, vanadium and chromium. Samples taken closer to the effluent source showed higher concentrations of metals while samples taken where the effluent exits Boat Harbour were generally lower.

Fraser said that mercury was detected in three of the six soil samples collected at low concentrations.

"While I am not a geologist, I suggest mercury but would not be a native mineral to the area of Pictou County."

"For example, vanadium is added to steel alloys to harden the metal for applications such as tool steels, rollers and presses. Chromium is used as an electroplated coating on steel to resist wear and abrasion and is also used in stainless steel alloys, along with nickel, to resist chemical attack."

One area of concern for Fraser, Gunning and Krawczyk is where Northern Pulp currently dumps settling pond wastes. Samples were not obtained from this area as trespassing was prohibited.

Armed with this new third party report, Matt Gunning indicated that the ball is now in the court of Northern Pulp and Nova Scotia Environment, which is responsible for all liabilities associated with the treatment site.

"The mill and the province are going to have to decide what to do," he said. "It’s already been determined that they have to build a proper treatment facility. Dumping (effluent) the way they are, everyone is agreeing that is not an acceptable situation. Our request is that it’s addressed in a timely manner."

Environment Minister Randy Delorey noted that he hasn’t had a chance to review the information but acknowledged that environment staff in Granton had received the report.

"I personally appreciate that the Clean The Mill group has taken the time to share this with the government. The info will be taken seriously."

Without having access to the report or knowing the concentrations of heavy metals from the samples, Delorey couldn’t commit to a timeline for potential government action.

"I think the urgency would relate to the concentration levels," he said. "The staff will be looking it over.

Northern Pulp’s environmental manager Dave Davis stated in an email that the mill
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"Northern Pulp has not been privy to any information regarding these tests the locations where samples were taken, the manner in which samples were collected, or the test results
replica Michael Kors outlet therefore, we are not in a position to make an informed statement on a story on which we have no data."

Published on November 06, 2014

Dr. John Krawczyk, left, chats with Matt Gunning of the Clean The Mill group after delivering a new third party analysis of soil and sea water around Northern Pulp’s Boat Harbour Effluent Treatment Facility to Nova Scotia Environment’s Pictou District office. The report says heavy metals, including mercury, are leaching from the treatment facility and into the Northumberland Strait. JOHN BRANNEN THE NEWS

Published on
fake Michael Kors November 06, 2014

wholesale Michael Kors handbags outlet samples, collected by JIF Consulting’s Ian Fraser for the Clean the Mill Group and tested by Maxxam Environmental Laboratory in Bedford, were taken from various points along the effluent treatment facility: Point A is where
cheap michael kors untreated effluent arrives via pipeline from Northern Pulp; Point B
Michael Kors handbags is effluent that has idled in the settling ponds; Point C is where aerators oxygenate the effluent for bacterial breakdown; Point D is where treated effluent is released into the Northumberland Strait. CREDIT/JOHN BRANNEN

Heavy metals are naturally occurring throughout Nova Scotia. It would be interesting to know what are the background levels compared to the levels found. Also, were samples collected according to standard test procedures.

Northern Pulp has come been criticized by the Facebook group time and again for self reporting test results. There has been a constant outcry from this group that independent third party testing and reporting is required, even when a professional
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