reuters.com
Canada oil pipeline spills 200,000 liters on aboriginal land

A pipeline in the western Canadian province of Saskatchewan has leaked 200,000 liters (52,834 gallons) of oil in an aboriginal community, the provincial government said on Monday.

The government was notified late in the afternoon on Friday, and 170,000 liters have since been recovered, said Doug McKnight, assistant deputy minister in the Ministry of the Economy, which regulates pipelines in Saskatchewan.

Oil pipelines are viewed by the oil-rich provinces of Alberta and Saskatchewan as a critical lifeline to move crude to the coast, but they have drawn fierce opposition from environmental and indigenous groups.

The spill came seven months after another major incident in Saskatchewan, in which a Husky Energy Inc pipeline leaked 225,000 liters into a major river and cut off the drinking water supply for two cities.

It was not immediately clear how the current incident happened or which company owns the underground pipeline that leaked the oil.

McKnight said Tundra Energy Marketing Inc, which has a line adjacent to the spill, is leading cleanup efforts.

“There are a number of pipes in the area,” he told reporters in Regina. “Until we excavate it, we won’t know with 100-percent certainty which pipe.”

Tundra, a privately held unit of Canadian grain trading and energy conglomerate James Richardson and Sons Ltd, released a statement saying it is cooperating with all levels of government and will ensure “the affected land is restored appropriately.”

The incident happened in the lands of the Ocean Man First Nation 140 km (87 miles) southeast of the provincial capital of Regina, according to the province.

McKnight said the spill has been contained in the low-lying area in which it was discovered. Ocean Man Chief Connie Big Eagle said the spill was 15 meters (50 feet) in diameter on Friday.

Ocean Man has 540 residents, one-third of whom live on the reserve, Big Eagle said.

She said an area resident who had smelled the scent of oil for a week located the spill and alerted her on Friday. The chief said there are no homes near the spill but it is about 400 meters (1,320 feet) from the local cemetery.

“We have got to make sure that Tundra has done everything that they can to get our land back to the way it was. That can take years,” she said. “They have assured me that they follow up and they don’t leave … until we are satisfied.”

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“To the more than one million Canadians who profess the Muslim faith, I want to say directly, we are with you. Thirty-six million hearts are breaking with yours. Know that we value you. You enrich our country in immeasurable ways, this is your home.” -Prime Minister Justin Trudeau

Thousands of people gathered in vigils and rallies accross Canada, in solidarity with Québec City, to mourn Khaled Belkacemi, Azzeddine Soufiane, Mamadou Tanou, Ibrahima Barry, Aboubaker Thabti and Abdelkrim Hassane, the six men who were killed by a white supremacist terrorist at the Sainte-Foy Centre Culturel Islamique on Sunday night, and support the nineteen more people who were injured in the attack. 

From Québec City, QC (1 and 2) to Toronto, ON (3), from Regina, SK (4) to Halifax, NS (5), from Iqualuit, NU (6) to Calgary, AB (7), and from Ottawa, ON (8) and Montreal, QC (9) to Vancouver, BC (10), people came out to offer love and compassion, friendship and sisterhood to the Muslim community. 

Now, this is Canada.