Fisheries and Oceans Canada

Fisheries and Oceans Canada

July 31, 2015 13:36 ET

Independent Review of the M/V Marathassa Fuel Spill Environmental Response Operation

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - July 31, 2015) - The Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, today issued the following statement:

Our Government is committed to protecting our coastline. That is why we asked Mr. John Butler to conduct an independent report into the MV Marathassa fuel spill. Today, Mr. Butler released his independent report. His report, Independent Review of the M/V Marathassa Fuel Oil Spill Environmental Response Operation, presents findings and recommendations which will contribute to the environmental response capability of the Canadian Coast Guard, Environment Canada, Transport Canada and their partners. I thank Mr. Butler and his team for their work.

I have directed the Canadian Coast Guard, in concert with their federal partners and other levels of government, to act swiftly on all of Mr. Butler's recommendations. Implementation of all recommendations is already in progress. Once all 25 recommendations are complete, I will report back to British Columbians. In the meantime, I am urging closer cooperation between all environmental response agencies in Canada's major ports.

I want to once again thank the citizens of Vancouver and the nearby municipalities for their active engagement, their outpouring of concern and their overwhelming willingness to be involved in clean-up efforts. I come from a maritime community and I fully understand and share the frustration of having a foreign ship enter a Canadian harbour and spill fuel into our waters.

I want to reassure British Columbians that the Government of Canada is strongly committed to ensuring the protection of our marine environments. The polluter pay principle means that the polluting vessel is responsible for the costs of cleaning up the mess they left in English Bay. Our government will aggressively pursue compensation. As Canada's trade with the world grows, we must be able to ensure that economic activity on our waters be conducted safely and responsibly.

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Contact Information

  • Frank Stanek
    Media Relations
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    613-990-7537

    Sophie Doucet
    Director of Communications
    Office of the Minister
    Fisheries and Oceans Canada
    613-992-3474