Host of Recommendations

Cape Breton Post
Tues., Jan. 30, 2007

As Sydney absorbs the news of the $400-million plan to clean up its toxic sites, government will work to implement a host of recommendations guiding the project. In 2006, three members of a joint review panel advised governments on what steps should be taken if they chose to solidify and cap the tar ponds and coke ovens sites. Government responded to those recommendations during Sunday's announcement.

Recommendations governments have fully agreed to adopt are:

  • To get the Sydney Tar Ponds Agency to evaluate the potential for airborne emissions and implement appropriate mitigation measures in the project design.
  • Develop a detailed air monitoring plan for construction activities that includes real-time data, early warning and early reporting of deteriorating air quality.
  • Governments will also ensure the development of a followup program.
  • Complete hydrogeological modelling to be reviewed and incorporated into the final design to protect groundwater and surface water.
  • As well, develop a detailed groundwater monitoring program that includes deeper bedrock zones.
  • Develop scientific and engineering criteria for the tar ponds cap and describe how the cap would respond to repeated freeze and thaw cycles, migration of gas under the cap, erosion and cracks. As well, develop a cap monitoring program.
  • Develop criteria for solidification and stabilization including site-specific leachate criteria for PAHs and PCBs.
  • Treatability study assessing the tar ponds and tar cell to substantiate compliance with pre-established criteria.
  • Consult Department of Fisheries and Oceans on the design of constructed watercourses and long-term monitoring of Coke Ovens Brook and Wash Brook watersheds.
  • Ongoing monitoring of Sydney harbour
  • Develop a detailed transportation management plan
  • Develop a future use plan for the sites
  • Develop a contingency plan for heritage resources uncovered during the project.
  • Develop a reporting protocol as part of the monitoring program.
Recommendations government proposed instead of fully agreeing to panel recommendations are:
  • To address wastewater treatment, governments will enforce the Fisheries Act habitat protection and pollution prevention provisions compliance and enforcement policy.
  • Government will encourage the use of native trees where replanting is considered.
  • To consider cost-sharing the operation and maintenance of a trail and open space system on the remediated lands.
  • To examine the need to enhance areas around the perimeter of the sites
  • To consider any meaningful impacts on property values that may be attributed to project activities.
  • Appoint an independent three-member monitoring oversight board.
  • Support the community liaison committee's mandate as the Department of Transportation and Public Works responds to specific concerns.