July 5-12, 2004

Panel review not needed for proposed Phase III of Trans Labrador Highway

OTTAWA, ONT-Federal Environment Minister David Anderson said last week that a proposal by the Newfoundland and Labrador Department of Transportation and Works to build and maintain Phase III of the Trans Labrador Highway will not require referral to a mediator or review panel under the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. The project consists of a two-lane gravel surface highway from Cartwright Junction to Happy Valley-Goose Bay. Anderson concluded that the project is unlikely to cause significant adverse environmental effects, based on his review of the comprehensive study report (CSR), including the conclusions and recommendations submitted by Fisheries and Oceans Canada; public comments received during the 50-day consultation period on the CSR; the implementation of mitigation measures outlined in the report; and the implementation of a follow-up program. Consequently, the Minister has referred the project back to the federal authority, Transport Canada, for appropriate action. The road will be constructed to a 80 km/hr design standard with a posted speed limit of 70 km/hr. Construction is expected to be carried out in phases over a six-year period. More information is available from Claire Chippindale at the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, 613/957-0313, FAX 613/957-0946, E-mail claire.chippindale@ceaa-acee.gc.ca.
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