Convoy of hundreds of trucks nears Ottawa to protest federal oil policies – National

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Hundreds of trucks are expected to roll into Ottawa Tuesday to protest the federal government’s policies on the oil industry.

The main portion of the United We Roll Convoy set out from Red Deer, Alta., last Thursday and made stops in Regina, Dryden, Thunder Bay, and Sault Ste. Marie before mustering at Arnprior, Ont., just outside the capital.

WATCH: Truck convoy rolls through Calgary on the way to Ottawa






The rally is expected to occupy almost a kilometre of Wellington Street, in front of Parliament.

Lead organizer Glen Carritt says the display is about showing support for new oil pipelines and opposition to the federal carbon tax and new rules on oil transportation.

The convoy includes members of the Yellow Vest Movement, whose demonstrations across the country have had widely varying agendas, from supporting pipelines to denouncing a United Nations compact on global migration.

WATCH: Alberta’s plan to ship oil by rail backfires






Demonstrators from eastern Canada are also expected to link up with the convoy.

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Chicken and Rice Soup with Garlicky Chile Oil Recipe

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Time to make the garlic-chile oil! (Doubling or tripling it wouldn’t be a bad idea, just saying.) Heat ¼ cup plus 2 Tbsp. vegetable oil in a large saucepan over medium. Add garlic and cook, swirling pan often, until golden brown, 3–5 minutes; the garlic will continue to cook and darken slightly after it’s off the heat, so be conservative here. Transfer to a small heatproof bowl, leaving 1 Tbsp. garlic oil in pot. Stir 2 tsp. crushed red pepper flakes into garlic oil in bowl; set aside.

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‘You can smell crude in the air’: Train carrying oil derails near western Manitoba village

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CN Rail is working to clean up an oil leak after nearly 40 train cars carrying crude oil derailed near a village in western Manitoba early Saturday morning.

CN crews are responding to the derailment, which occurred at 3:30 a.m. Saturday morning near St. Lazare, about 300 kilometres northwest of Winnipeg near the Manitoba-Saskatchewan border, a spokesperson from the railway said. 

« You can smell crude in the air. That’s really concerning, » said rancher Jayme Corr. The derailment happened on his property, about 10 kilometres south of St. Lazare, in the rural municipality of Ellice-Archie.

« There’s oil leaking, and where they’re sitting is [near] a water lagoon, » he said.

The derailment happened around 3:30 a.m. Saturday. As of Saturday afternoon, crews were still on scene. (Riley Laychuk/CBC )

Emergency personnel woke Corr up around 5 a.m. Saturday to alert him to the derailment, which happened just under two kilometres from his home.

No injuries or fires reported

Initial reports are that approximately 37 crude oil cars have derailed and that there is a partial leak of crude oil, Jonathan Abecassis, a media relations director for CN, wrote in an email to CBC.

« A perimeter has been set up around the area to facilitate site access. There are no reports of injuries or fires, » he wrote.

« CN crews will be conducting a full site assessment to determine how much product has spilled and exactly how many cars are involved. First responders are on location. »

CN’s environmental team has started cleaning up the area.

Corr said his cattle have since been moved away from the area, but he’s concerned that his main water source for the summertime will now be contaminated.

The train derailed about 10 kilometres south of St. Lazare, in the rural municipality of Ellice-Archie. (Riley Laychuk/CBC)

The rancher says he thinks a derailment like Saturday’s has been a long time coming.

« It seems to be the trains go faster, they’re longer, heavier, and the maintenance is getting less and less, » Corr said.

The Transportation Safety Board of Canada has sent investigators to the site of the derailment. 

‘It’s discouraging’

Jean-Paul Chartier, a rural municipality of Ellice-Archie councillor, said staff from the local fire department are on the scene of the derailment, assisting CN crews.

« They’re trying to do their best to get everything contained, and trying to get the traffic going, and trying to clear whatever debris there is, » Chartier said.

Trains frequently run through St. Lazare, and Chartier said he’s thankful the crash didn’t occur closer to the community. In areas of the village, there are houses just hundreds of metres from the tracks, and 30 to 40 trains can travel past each day, he said.

« Every time they come through, you think of the tragedy that happened in Quebec, » he said, referring to the Lac-Mégantic, Que., rail disaster, which killed 47 people after a freight train loaded with fuel exploded.

« It’s discouraging. Like you look at it everyday and you say ‘hopefully it’s not today and hopefully it doesn’t ever happen.’ But you’ve always got it in the back of your mind. »

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We’re Eating Olive Oil on EVERYTHING Right Now. Here’s Why. | Healthyish

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Long before it was a supermarket commodity, olive oil illuminated ancient civilizations, anointed pharaohs and kings, bathed triumphant Olympians, and of course, made food taste good. It’s a real workhorse, one of the few ingredients you’ll find in almost every kitchen, but not many people realize that it’s essentially a fruit juice, meaning that, unlike its hardy counterpart, vinegar, it has a shelf life—best used within 18 months of its harvest date.

marinated goat cheese with herbs and spices

Alex Lau

Peak olive oil makes marinated cheese even more amazing.

This past fall was my fifth harvest of Wonder Valley olive oil. In October, the firm, green olives begins to flush with a light mauve hue. Over the next month or so, they’ll continue to ripen through a spectrum of reddish purple, then, if left on the tree long enough, to a final shiny black. At Wonder Valley, we barely let the fruit blush before we plucked them off the trees the first week of November because we favor a bracingly green, herbaceous, polyphenol-packed olive oil. The oil is left to settle for a few days, any sediment is filtered out, then it’s bottled and ready to go.

These first few weeks of the year is olive oil magic time. The new harvest oils are released into the world—buy direct from the producer if you can or be mindful of harvest rather than the expiration dates listed on the bottle. Taste alongside different varietals or regions, taste it against that old, oily bottle that’s been lingering in the back of the pantry. You don’t need professional training to taste the nuances of olive oil, the peppery intensity that comes from picking under-ripe fruit or the buttery soft flavors of letting them mature fully.

hea-oliveoilharvest.jpg

Photo by Jay Carroll

Alison Carroll working on the Wonder Valley harvest.

I have a bottomless supply of fresh extra virgin olive oil on hand, the most decadent job perk, and I’m constantly getting high on my own supply. While it’s at peak season, I use it in the most humble and simple ways: streamed into bowls of fresh beans and grains and pasta with nothing more than fresh herbs or grated cheese and cracked pepper, or blitzed into sauces like pesto or caper-heavy salsa verdes, or drizzled over sweet seasonal fruits and soft cheese like figs and Roquefort, and forever brightening a bowl of leafy greens. At my home here in Joshua Tree, we are able to cook outdoors over fire year-round. Sturdier vegetables like eggplant or squash get cooked in the embers, and we fold the caramelized flesh with chiles, olive oil, and tahini while a grill of peppers and carrots need nothing more than a glug of it and salt to shine. I even book-end each day with a small shot of olive oil for maximum polyphenols (free-radical fighting antioxidants), omega 3s, and digestive support, and I’ll take a shot before I start a night of drinking to prevent a hangover (it works!).

So, yes, you can use olive oil year-round, but now is the time to go all in. Get the best, freshest batch you can find, and follow my lead.

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25 Healthy Olive Oil Recipes That Taste Like Liquid Sunshine | Healthyish

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This is an antidote to every side salad that ever was. Instead of meh greens, it’s got shavings of fennel that bend and twist but keep their refreshing crunch. It’s got a lean dressing and nuggets of deeply toasted croutons, meaty walnuts, and shards of Parmesan. It has acidity and zing—lemon juice, the zest, vinegar, mint, and red pepper flakes—just in case you were worried about palate fatigue.

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Alberta’s OPEC-style cuts draw down oil backlog, analysis firm says

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Concerns with the fallout from Alberta’s OPEC-style cuts may persist, but an energy data analysis firm says the mandatory oil curtailment appears to be drawing down crude inventories.

The province this month imposed an 8.7-per-cent oil-production cut on industry, or roughly 325,000 barrels a day, in order to clear a huge backlog of crude that was punishing Alberta oil prices.

Government officials haven’t released statistical updates on the effectiveness of the strategy, but a senior oil analyst at Genscape Inc. said its research indicates the curtailment is working as intended so far.

« We are seeing it through January 19th roughly in line with what the government has stated as their goals to draw down inventories, » Mike Walls said in an interview.

« For the most part, we saw significant builds [in inventories] basically throughout 2018, and now we are starting to see draws. So I can say that they are having an impact already. »

Premier Rachel Notley has pointed to the narrowing gap between Canadian and American benchmark oil prices as evidence of the impact of the government’s strategy. (Jason Franson/Canadian Press)

On Twitter Friday, Genscape said inventories in Western Canada fell 603,000 barrels to 34 million barrels for the week ending Jan. 18, pointing to it as « further evidence that Alberta production cuts continue to impact the market. »

The privately held U.S.-based firm uses both public data and proprietary research to gather information for clients on storage hubs, pipeline flows and crude-by-rail shipments in Western Canada.

The province did not confirm Genscape’s figures. The government gets its data from a third party and the information is not publicly available.

« We’re currently reviewing how much has been drawn down from all storage levels across Alberta, » government spokesperson Mike McKinnon said in an e-mail. « More information, including the next steps, will be available soon. » 

Alberta is matching its production levels to what its estimated export capacity is while also encouraging a drawdown in storage levels. For January and February, this production limit is 3.6 million barrels a day of raw crude and bitumen, which is slightly lower than the province’s estimated export capacity.

Premier Rachel Notley has pointed to the narrowing gap between Canadian and American benchmark oil prices as evidence of the impact of the government’s strategy.

Peter Tertzakian, executive director of the ARC Energy Research Institute, said he believes the province’s policy is working. (Monty Kruger/CBC)

On Friday, the difference was under $10 US a barrel. In the fall, it spiked to over $50.

Energy economist Peter Tertzakian, executive director of the ARC Energy Research Institute, said he believes the policy is working and that the price is a good gauge. 

« The differential has rebounded, » said Tertzakian.

« I’m optimistic we’re through the worst of it and hopefully we won’t need government intervention in the future. But the extraordinary action that they took at that time was appropriate.

« We were facing catastrophic layoffs had the situation gone on for several more weeks. I believe that was averted. Now, the situation is still not healthy, but I believe the government prevented something far worse from happening. »

Alberta announced in early December that it would temporarily impose production cuts on the industry in 2019.

The decision followed calls from some oil company CEOs — and United Conservative Party Leader Jason Kenney — for the province to enact a mandatory curtailment to bolster prices, improve cash flow and stem job losses.

But opponents of the policy — including Suncor, Husky Energy and Imperial Oil — said the market was working and that taking such a step could have implications for future investment in Alberta.

Hundreds of oil tank cars are waiting to be loaded at a terminal near the border of Alberta and Saskatchewan. For January and February, Alberta’s production limit is 3.6 million barrels a day of raw crude and bitumen, which is slightly lower than the province’s estimated export capacity. (Dave Rae/CBC)

Conference Board of Canada chief economist Pedro Antunes wrote this month that intervening in industry production plans « could hurt the province’s attractiveness for future investment over the long term. » 

But he also said the near-term solution « will likely be effective in shoring up prices and heading off a decline in royalties and a larger pullback in activity in the oilfield services sector. »

Industry and government will also be mindful of any significant interruption to rail or pipeline movement, which could have major impacts on the effort to reduce the oil glut if they occurred. 

Kevin Birn, an oilsands analyst with IHS Markit, said Alberta’s curtailment policy is probably something that’s going to be judged over a longer period of time.

« Yes, differentials have narrowed and that’s a positive metric because the prices we saw prior to Christmas were unsustainable, » Birn said. « But curtailment needs to be measured over a longer period of time. »

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What we know about Alberta’s plan to buy thousands of oil tank cars

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In late November, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley announced that within « a few weeks » her government would unveil its plan to buy thousands of railcars to help transport the province’s oil to market. 

Eight weeks later and the provincial government is still in negotiations with railway companies and suppliers. The latest update from Energy Minister Marg McCuaig-Boyd was only to say « it’s an ongoing conversation. »

The government says it needs the cars because there’s a backlog of oil in the province and a lack of pipeline space to export it.

With few details coming from the Notley government, here’s what we know — and don’t know — about its plan.

Total cost

The government hasn’t provided an estimated cost for buying the railcars, as negotiations are ongoing. It’s difficult to hazard a guess considering how few details are known about what the government is trying to acquire.

Notley has said Alberta needs to buy as many as 7,000 tank cars to meet its goal of shipping an additional 120,000 barrels of oil a day by train. She has also said that could include about 80 locomotives, with each train pulling 100 to 120 cars.

Workers prepare to start loading a tank car at an Altex Energy terminal. (Dave Rae/CBC)

Each tank car can hold nearly 700 barrels of oil.

The province likely won’t buy the cars, but instead lease them for between three and five years, which experts say is the industry standard.

The government also wants to sign agreements with railway companies and secure capacity to load oil in Alberta and unload the trains at destinations in North America.

Railcar shortage

Finding that many tank cars may prove difficult because of a shortage throughout North America.

In the third quarter of 2018, railcar manufacturers received orders for 11,000 new tankers, according to data from the Washington-based Railway Supply Institute (RSI). About 3,000 new cars were produced in that quarter and the backlog of orders now sits at about 31,000.

The shortage of tank cars is partly the result of Canada and the U.S. both transitioning away from the old model DOT-111 tank cars, which were involved in the deadly rail disaster in Lac-Mégantic, Que., in 2013. The new standard is the TC-117 in Canada (DOT-117 in the U.S.), which features a thicker steel hull, thermal protection, and protective valve covers, among other safety features.

Premier Rachel Notley has said she’s disappointed with Ottawa’s lukewarm response to the province’s plan to ease oil bottlenecks by buying more railcars. (Canadian Press)

Some rail companies are also retrofitting the older tank cars to meet the new safety standards in North America.

« We’re seeing fairly strong demand over the last few quarters in terms of tank car manufacturing and retrofits, » RSI president Mike O’Malley said in an interview.

Premium price

The shortage is one reason why Alberta will likely have to pay a premium to secure the thousands of tank cars it wants.

One of North America’s largest railcar leasing companies said prices are increasing.

On a conference call with investors and analysts earlier this week, GATX executive Thomas Ellman said market lease rates for tank cars were up 25 to 50 per cent in 2018 compared to the previous year.

Another factor driving up tank car prices has been an increase in the amount of crude shipped by rail in both Canada and the U.S.

Canada set several records in 2018 for shipping oil by train. (Dave Rae/CBC)

For eight straight months, Canada’s rail system set new records for crude volumes, according to the National Energy Board. The NEB’s most recent data is for November 2018, although recent statements from CN and CP Rail indicate crude-by-rail volumes have since dropped. 

In the U.S., volumes increased to more than 20 million barrels in October, but the numbers are still lower than in 2014, when oil prices were about $100 US per barrel and more than 35 million barrels were transported by rail, according to the U.S. Energy Information Administration.

‘Insurance’ plan

The potential impact of the Alberta government’s railcar plan is debatable. The first railcars are only expected to arrive at the end of this year, with the bulk of them arriving in 2020.

By then, Alberta should have more space to export oil by pipeline, which is cheaper and faster compared to rail. Enbridge’s Line 3 replacement project, which runs from Alberta to southern Manitoba, is expected to be complete by December 2019, just as the first of the government’s railcars are expected to roll into the province.

« If that’s the case [with Line 3], we really don’t see a need for crude-by-rail volumes to continue to grow, » said Michael Dunn, an analyst for GMP FirstEnergy.

Considering delays that pipeline projects can face, Dunn said the government likely wanted to have backup measures in place in case Enbridge wasn’t able to get the pipeline up and running on time.

« I view their purchase as basically an insurance policy. »

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Tongue-in-cheek Edmonton art exhibit explores orphaned oil wells adoption

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A new exhibition in Edmonton is raising awareness about the issue of orphaned oil and gas wells and creating an interactive, tongue-in-cheek opportunity for people to “adopt” an orphan well.

Orphan wells are oil and gas sites where there is no longer anyone legally responsibility for it. As of Sept. 13, 2018, there were 2,061 orphan wells for abandonment, according to the Orphan Well Association (OWA), an industry-funded group that assumes responsibility for the inactive wells of bankrupt companies.



INFOGRAPHIC: Alberta’s inactive, abandoned oil and gas well problem

The Orphan Well Adoption Agency (OWAA) by Alana Bartol is being showcased at Latitude 53, with an adoption agent on site at a makeshift agency every Saturday from 12 to 5 p.m.

“It asks significant questions about the oil and gas industry in Alberta, which is something that obviously affects us all,” said Latitude 53 executive director Michelle Schultz.

Prospective caretakers can fill out an adoption application form at the exhibit.

Julia Wong/Global News

The exhibition allows attendees to go through an adoption process for one of the thousands of orphan wells in the province. Questions about experience as a caretaker, motivations for adoption and plans to address a well’s behavioural problems are asked by an OWAA representative.

“Oftentimes with these sites, a lot of the considerations are extremely practical, simply about the physical aspects of the sites,” said OWAA representative Haylee Fortin.

“This undertaking has other aspects to it, which is the emotional undertaking, and we need to be sure people are willing to commit to the well.”

The adoption agency includes portraits of orphan wells along with information about remediation and the adoption process.

Julia Wong/Global News

Fortin said interest in the adoption process has been fairly positive.

“Everyone seems to be interested in becoming a caretaker in some capacity,” she said. “There is some uncertainty because it is a big undertaking, but it is a very thorough process to ensure someone is ready for the emotional commitment to the well.”


READ MORE:
Supreme Court to decide how abandoned oil wells to be handled

Orphan wells will likely remain an issue in Alberta for quite some time, according to a 2017 report by the OWA.

“The increase in orphan properties is expected to continue as there are nearly 30 companies within Alberta’s regulatory jurisdiction that are currently insolvent,” the report read.

Internal documents from the Alberta Energy Regulator show that the cost to clean up the province’s oilpatch may be $260 billion, a number far higher than any amount previously made public by government and industry officials.


READ MORE:
Cleaning up Alberta’s oilpatch could cost $260 billion, internal documents warn

The Edmonton show also includes portraits of orphan wells, maps of sites and letters to potential caretakers from the wells themselves.

“Help. I am being dismantled,” one well letter said. “Workers built me and now they lay me to rest, so why am I still here?”

“What the artist intends is — it does create a sense of empathy and maybe a reality that you didn’t know existed,” Schultz said.

“I wasn’t aware there was 2,000 of these abandoned oil and gas wells across Alberta and the various states they were in,” she added. “These are actual wells that do exist but obviously, the artist has then taken them and created a project around this existence.”


READ MORE:
Alberta aims to speed up orphan well cleanup with $235M loan

Schultz said the exhibition is not about pointing fingers, but rather opening up conversation.

“About what our collective and individual responsibilities are for industry and ideas of remediation and what that might look like,” she said.

“There’s always people who will take things in a certain light or may read this as critical, I guess, of industry. But I think, more importantly, it starts those conversations, which is one of the great things that art can do.”

The exhibition runs until Jan. 26.

– With files from Global News and The Canadian Press

© 2019 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.

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‘Super sponge’ seen as absorbent next step in oil spill mitigation

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Engineers at the University of Calgary say they’ve come up with a fresh and effective new technique in the global hunt for a better way to clean up oil spills. 

The process uses a material they call a « super sponge. » It’s non-toxic and biodegradable, to boot.

To demonstrate, Nashaat Nassar puts bitumen into a two-litre glass container filled with water and then flicks a switch. The mixture is shaken and stirred.

The chemical engineer and associate professor then sprinkles on it a dark powder — a magnetic chemical compound of boron nitride.

« They are hydrophobic. So, they don’t like water. They like oil, » Nassar says.

Nashaat Nassar, a chemical engineer and associate professor at the University of Calgary, is part of the ‘super sponge’ research project. They hope to test it on a larger scale. (Dave Rae/CBC)

At a microscopic level, the material is extremely porous, kind of like a sponge, says Nassar as he demonstrates by hovering a magnet wrapped in foil over the oil and sucks it right out of the water.

« With this material, we can minimize the spread of the oil, » he says. 

The « sponge » also has the benefits of being non-toxic and inexpensive to produce, Nassar says.

The innovative project is part of a burgeoning area of research in oil spill cleanup.

Seth Darling is a scientist at the Argonne National Laboratory in Illinois, where work is ongoing on another possible sponge solution to oil spill cleanup. (Submitted by Seth Darling)

Similar research in the U.S.

Scientists at the Argonne National Laboratory just outside Chicago are working on another spongy solution. Theirs uses specially treated sheets of polyurethane foam that can soak up oil.

« You can pick it up, squeeze it like a kitchen sponge, and the oil will come out, » said laboratory scientist Seth Darling.

« We went out there and demonstrated very clearly that you could pick up oil slicks off the surface of the ocean, out there in the real world, deployed from a boat. »

Darling says the Deepwater Horizon explosion in 2010 — when millions of barrels of oil gushed into the Gulf of Mexico — prompted many scientists to rethink cleanup technologies.

The explosion at British Petroleum’s Deepwater Horizon offshore rig on April 20, 2010, killed 11 workers. (U.S. Coast Guard/Associated Press)

« Everyone saw the catastrophic effects it was having on the environment and the monetary burden it also created for the company and the whole local economy there. So, lots of researchers thought, there’s got to be a better way to deal with this than what’s out there. Lots of folks started working on this idea of asorbents. »

Typically, oil spill cleanup involves skimming and burning the crude off the water’s surface, or breaking it down with chemical dispersants.

The powdered boron nitride developed at the University of Calgary, when added to oil, allows the oil to be drawn out of the water with a foil-wrapped magnet. (Dave Rae/CBC)

‘Far from perfect’

The oil recovery rate, though, is far from perfect, says a science historian at the University of King’s College in Halifax.

« Nobody would dispute that our track record is not very good, » Ian Stewart says.

« It’s a very, very complex, deeply challenging thing to deal with. »

The size and location of a spill are also factors in recovery, he says.

Ian Stewart, a science historian at the University of King’s College in Halifax, says the oil recovery rate after a spill is far from perfect. (Submitted by Ian Stewart)

« Five to 15 per cent is what’s said. But it really depends. If you’re in a very calm, secluded bay and you’ve got the right technologies on hand, then a lot more can be recovered. It does vary. The big spills that have happened throughout history, they have typically been in places that were very hard to recover. »

But, he cautions, real world testing of the new cleanup technologies is yet another challenge.

« It’s all promising stuff. The problem, as these researchers will tell you, is that they’re far away from being operational. »

Back at the University of Calgary, researchers recognize that a lab demonstration is one thing. The open ocean is another.

« We are always trying to look at efficient techniques to go beyond the lab and try to have more real solutions to what the industry is facing these days, » Nassar says.

The next step is testing the « super sponge » on a larger scale, he says.

Engineers at the University of Calgary hope to expand the research to larger projects. (Dave Rae/CBC)

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Heating oil drains into Ottawa River after spill in downtown Gatineau, Que.

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An undetermined amount of heating oil has ended up in the Ottawa River after a spill in downtown Gatineau, Que., near the offices of the provincial environment ministry.

The spill happened at 170 rue de l’Hôtel de Ville during a delivery Friday, according to an email from ministry spokesperson Alexandre Ouellet, the regional director of the Outaouais Environmental Control Center.

Initially, the Quebec Ministry of Environment and Fight Against Climate Change said the spill, also near the city’s courthouse, was between 700 and 1,200 litres.

A Saturday morning update downgraded the amount to 200 to 300 litres. 

The spill happened at 170 rue de l’Hôtel de Ville, according to a spokesperson with the environment ministry in Quebec. (Radio-Canada)

No visible sheen on river Saturday morning 

Ouellet said the oil spilled onto the pavement and into a storm drain flowing into the Ottawa River. An environmental emergency team was sent in to ensure that necessary measures to protect the environment and keep people safe were put in place, he said.

Ouellet said temporary barriers known as booms were deployed to limit the amount of fuel that reached the river — and that they had contained most of the oil. 

On Saturday morning, new checks were made at the Ottawa River, he said, and no oil sheen could be seen on the surface.

The impact to the river is still considered low, and the recovery work was expected to wrap up around noon Saturday, according to Ouellet.

While it’s impossible to tell how much of the fuel reached the river because of its icy conditions, Ouellet said it appears the river wasn’t seriously affected. He said Gatineau’s drinking water quality was likely not compromised, but the city has been notified of the situation as a preventive measure.

Ottawa Riverkeeper executive director Patrick Nadeau says his group will be following up to see what happened during the oil spill. (Radio-Canada)

Ottawa River source of drinking water for 2 million 

Ottawa Riverkeeper, a grassroots charity dedicated to protecting the river and its tributaries, said that while it doesn’t consider the oil spill major, it will be investigating to understand precisely what happened and to make sure the emergency response was adequate and timely.

« An oil spill in the aquatic environment is never good news, » said executive director Patrick Nadeau.

The fact the oil spilled into an ice-covered river in wintertime, Nadeau said, will make the clean-up efforts difficult.

 « In our opinion probably very little oil that reached the Ottawa River last night would have been able to be recovered, » Nadeau said.

« Oil of course is toxic to the aquatic species, so it’s not good news to have that entering our waterways. »

The Ottawa River is also the source of drinking water for some two million people, he added.

A Petro-Canada truck is parked at the scene of an oil spill in Gatineau, Que., on Dec. 21. The company’s spokesperson said a third-party Petro-Canada fuel distributer, Petro-Canada Fuels, responded to the incident. (Radio-Canada)

Teams from the environment ministry, the City of Gatineau and Petro-Canada were on scene late Friday to contain the spill.

A Petro-Canada spokesperson told Radio-Canada that a « response plan was immediately initiated » following the spill and that the ministry and local officials had both been notified.

The City of Ottawa said it was also aware of the incident.

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