Cleaning up a failure to communicate

Authority Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

 After a hazardous spill on his neighbour’s property ran onto his field, John was concerned for his health. He did not believe that the contamination had been properly dealt with. Frustrated by the lack of information he had been given about the spill and the steps taken to clean up the area he called us to see if we could investigate. Through our investigation we learned that the owner of the property where the spill had taken place had immediately notified the Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy about the spill. Testing and remediation of the site and surrounding area had been undertaken by certified environmental professionals. However, while the ministry had overseen a reasonable process of addressing the spill, it did not appear that either it, nor the company charged with testing and remediation, had provided John with any information about what had taken place. In addition, the publicly accessible provincial site registry for contaminated properties had not been updated to show that remediation had been completed. In response to our investigation, the ministry agreed to contact John to let him know what steps had been taken to address the spill. Following our request, the environmental consultant’s final report was sent to John. With respect to the site registry, the ministry agreed to ensure that it included up-to-date information regarding the remediation that had taken place.

Category Environment and Natural Resources
Type Case Summary
Fiscal Year 2017