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Papermill sludge berm must be cleaned up

According to a report from Matthew Van Dongen of Osprey News Network, the Ontario government has ordered the owner ...


According to a report from Matthew Van Dongen of Osprey News Network, the Ontario government has ordered the owner of a papermill sludge berm in Pelham to clean up contamination that has leaked from the property. The sludge is the byproduct of paper recycling at Abitibi Consolidated in Thorold.

Neighbours mounted a protest to the Ministry of the Environment that runoff from the large pile of paper fibre biosolids escaped into nearby ditches and wetlands. After investigating, the ministry issued a provincial order “requiring the owner to address the off-site contamination,” local ministry branch manager Paul Nieweglowski was quoted saying. The contaminated area, a ditch and wetland owned by CP Railway, borders 325 Church St. and is only a few metres away from the berm.

Nieweglowski said the order requires the berm owner to consult with CP on how to fix the contamination.

The order also requires the owner to hire an engineer to examine the integrity of a clay barrier around the berm meant to stop runoff water; to inspect the barrier weekly and every time it rains; to keep a record of all activities on-site; and to report to the ministry on a regular basis. All of the order requirements must be fulfilled by the end of this month.


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