May 24, 2004

BC Hydro teams with Ottawa on $32M Rock Bay cleanup

VICTORIA, BC-BC Hydro and the federal government will provide $17.4 million and $14.7 million, respectively, to clean up Victoria Harbour's Rock Bay, one of the most contaminated sites in British Columbia.The $32.1-million project will primarily address coal tar contamination at the 6.8-acre Rock Bay site, where a coal gasification plant operated from the 1860s to the early 1950s.There is also some residual metal and hydrocarbon contamination at the site. Although levels of these substances pose minimal health risks, they do exceed allowable levels, thus limiting most future activities at the site. Cleanup work is scheduled to begin in June and should be completed by December 2007. During that time, more than 36,000 cubic metres of contaminated soil and sediment-equal to 4,000 dump truck loads-will be removed from the site and transported to approved off-site treatment or disposal facilities. The project is one of the 57 high-priority sites accorded federal funding (see story, pg 3).
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