Teck Trail Operations says the fertilizer plant has been restarted after a low pH incident on Tuesday morning. Spokesperson Catherine Adair says the investigation is still underway to determine what caused the pH level drop at the outfall.

She adds Teck Trail Operations take this incident very seriously and that based on an initial assessment, the release does not create any health or safety risk to people, fish or wildlife other than potential short-term impacts on the aquatic life immediately at the outfall point.

The Ministry of Environment have called it an ‘acidic solution’ spill and says it was diverted into an on-site reservoir and will be neutralized prior to being released.  Columbia River water testing also indicated pH levels are within normal limits.  The B.C. Conservation Officer Service will continue to investigate.

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On Tuesday February 26, a low pH incident occurred at an outfall at Teck Trail Operations. Regulatory authorities including Emergency Management BC, the BC Ministry of Environment and Climate Change, and Environment and Climate Change Canada were immediately notified. An investigation was started immediately following the incident to determine the cause, and initial actions have been taken to prevent a reoccurrence.

Based on an initial assessment, the release does not create any health or safety risk to people, fish or wildlife other than potential short-term impacts on the aquatic life immediately at the outfall point. There is not expected to be any long-term impact on fish or the environment given the duration of the incident and the nature of the discharge. A third-party independent environmental impact assessment will be undertaken.

The fertilizer plant has been temporarily shut down.