Environment minister encourages public participation in EIA process (09/08/27)

NB 1223

Aug. 27 2009

FREDERICTON (CNB) - Members of the public are being encouraged to submit written briefs and to participate in the public meeting concerning the environmental impact assessment (EIA) for Irving Oil Ltd.'s proposed petroleum refinery and marine terminal in Saint John, Environment Minister Rick Miles announced today.

"The Department of Environment has received and accepted the final EIA report from Irving Oil Ltd. for its Eider Rock project," said Miles. "The department has determined that the final EIA report, which contains information on the actions the company will take to protect the environment, is satisfactory, and that it can be used by the province to initiate public consultation. The supporting documentation is being made available to the public so they may familiarize themselves in preparation for their participation in the process."

The public meeting will be held at 7 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 18, 2009, at the Simonds Lions Auditorium, 185 Loch Lomond Rd. in Saint John. Individuals wishing to make a presentation at the meeting should contact the Department of Environment at 506-453-3700. The meeting will also provide an opportunity for general comments.

"While Irving Oil has announced that it will not go ahead at this time with the Eider Rock project, a significant amount of work has been done since the project was registered with the department, and the proponent believes it's important to finish this process," said Miles. "The information from this assessment will be valuable in the future should such a project proceed. I encourage residents to participate in the public consultation process."

The Eider Rock project was registered for an EIA review on Jan. 25, 2007. It was determined on Feb. 7, 2007, that the proposed project required a comprehensive EIA. The final EIA report was received by the department on April 30, 2009.

The public participation requirements under the Environmental Impact Assessment Regulation - Clean Environment Act call for a public participation process to be conducted as part of the EIA review prior to a decision on the project.

Copies of the EIA report, report summary and the general review statement are available on the Department of Environment website, and at the following locations:

Written briefs should be submitted no later than Dec. 4, 2009, by mail to the Environment and Local Government Initiatives Branch, Department of Environment, 20 McGloin St., Marysville Place, 3rd Floor, Fredericton, N.B., E3A 5T8; by fax at 506-453-3676; or by e-mail to EIA-EIE@gnb.ca.


MEDIA CONTACT: Jennifer Graham, communications, Department of Environment, 506-453-3700.