29 December 2013 – Canadian gas processor SemCams has been ordered to pay a C$350,000 (US$326,000) fine after pleading guilty to releasing industrial wastewater that killed wildlife and damaged a creek in Alberta.
The fine stems from the 2010 spill of 852,000 litres of contaminated wastewater from a ruptured underground pipeline at a SemCams facility into a small creek and muskeg near Fox Creek, Alberta.
The spill killed hundreds of fish that were discovered downstream from the facility.
SemCams pleaded guilty to one count under the Fisheries Act and one count under provincial environmental legislation, Environment Canada said in a statement.
The Fisheries Act violation came with a C$200,000 penalty, most of which will be paid to the Environmental Damages Fund. The remaining C$15,000 will be paid to the Alberta provincial court.
Another $150,000 will pay for the provincial offence.
Environment Canada and Alberta Environment & Sustainable Resource Development jointly investigated the incident.
SemCams gathers and processes natural gas through four operated processing plants in Alberta. It also operates nearly 1000 kilometres of pipeline in the province.
*Luke Johnson, Upstreamonline