British Columbia Seeks Feedback and Engagement on Second Phase of Spill Response Regime
The British Columbia government is moving forward with the second phase of spill regulations, announcing further stakeholder engagement on important elements such as spill response in sensitive areas and geographic response plans.
The British Columbia government is moving forward with the second phase of spill regulations, announcing further stakeholder engagement on important elements such as spill response in sensitive areas and geographic response plans. The government will also establish an independent scientific advisory panel to recommend whether, and how, heavy oils (such as bitumen) can be safely transported and cleaned up. While the advisory panel is proceeding, the government is proposing regulatory restrictions on the increase of diluted bitumen (dilbit) transportation.
The second phase engagement process follows the first phase of regulatory overhaul introduced in October 2017, when the province established higher standards for spill preparedness, response, and recovery.
Feedback and Engagement
The province is planning an intentions paper for the end of February that will outline the government's proposed regulations and will be available for public comment.
In particular, the province will seek feedback on
- Response times, to ensure timely responses to spills
- Geographic response plans, to ensure that resources are available to support an immediate response that account for the unique characteristics of sensitive areas
- Compensation for loss of public and cultural use of land, resources, or public amenities in the case of spills
- Maximizing application of regulations to marine spills
- Restrictions on the increase of dilbit transportation until the behavior of spilled bitumen can be better understood and there is certainty regarding the ability to adequately mitigate spills