NEWS RELEASE · 18th August 2010
Simon Dyer, oilsands program director for the Pembina Institute, responded to today's release of the Liberal members' of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development report from the committee's study of the impact of oilsands development on Canada's freshwater:
"The Pembina Institute was disappointed to learn that the 18-month House of Commons Standing Committee investigation into oilsands pollution of water was cancelled with draft copies of the final report destroyed. Today, however, we welcome findings, important to Canadians, that have been salvaged in the Liberal report.
"It is very important elected representatives from all parties continue to investigate the worrying linkages between rapidly expanding oilsands development and similarly expanding threats and impacts on aquatic ecosystems.”
"Recent polling indicates 62 per cent of Albertans agree it's important for the government of Canada to play a role in managing oilsands development, and yet testimony presented to the committee points to an abdication of federal legal responsibility to protect fish-bearing waters.
"The report brings to light the very significant challenges posed by development of the oilsands. In response, we suggest a strong federal response is needed with not just words, but actions through a renewed federal regulatory presence in Alberta to address the ongoing impacts oilsands development is having on Canada's freshwater supply."