November 6, 2020
Port Hardy, British Columbia – Construction has begun on a new 10,800 square foot environmental response depot in Port Hardy, B.C. Funded under the Government of Canada’s Oceans Protection Plan, the new facility will strengthen the Canadian Coast Guard’s capacity to respond to marine pollution incidents in the areas of northern Vancouver Island and the central coast of British Columbia.
The new building and property will provide office space, storage space for environmental response, vessel, and Aids to Navigation equipment, and a large drive-on floating dock for easy loading of specialized pollution response vessels and other Coast Guard ships. Specially trained environmental response staff have been working out of a temporary facility in Port Hardy since 2018.
The new building will also offer meeting rooms and training space for Coast Guard and other local first responders, a mechanics workshop for small boat maintenance, and will have the capacity to support an Incident Command Post with a kitchen, laundry and accommodations in the event of a marine emergency in a remote location.
Under the Oceans Protection Plan, new investments in environmental response are strengthening the Coast Guard’s capability to respond to offshore and shoreline spills, employ Command and Control procedures, better protect wildlife, and contain and recover oil from the marine environment in the event of an incident on the waters of northern Vancouver Island and the central coast.
The Coast Guard is working on this project with the support of the Kwakiutl First Nation and the District of Port Hardy.
The $1.5 billion Oceans Protection Plan is the largest investment ever made to protect Canada’s coasts and waterways. This national plan is strengthening Canada’s world-leading marine safety system, providing economic opportunities for Canadians today, while protecting our coastlines and clean water for generations to come. This work is being done in close collaboration with Indigenous peoples, local stakeholders and coastal communities.
November 7, 2020, marks the fourth anniversary of the launch of the Oceans Protection Plan. Despite the new challenges that have emerged with COVID-19, the Oceans Protection Plan continues to:
- Foster partnerships with Indigenous and coastal communities;
- Improve marine incident response;
- Prevent marine accidents and pollution;
- Protect Canada’s endangered whale populations; and
- Preserve and restore Canada’s marine ecosystems.