Canada fines its own Navy $100,000 over fuel spill

HMCS St John's

The Halifax Provincial Court sentenced the Canadian Department of National Defence (DND) to pay a penalty of CAD$100,000 after pleading guilty to violating the state’s Fisheries Act.

The charges stem from a May 8, 2013, incident where approximately 9000 liters of diesel fuel was spilled from the Canadian Navy frigate HMCS St. John’s into Halifax Harbour while the vessel was at anchor.

This led to several reports of a large sheen in the harbor and a strong smell of diesel fuel in the surrounding area.

The Navy reported the diesel fuel spill on the morning of May 8, 2013, and participated in efforts to contain and recover the spill over the next several days. On January 30, 2015, Environment and Climate Change Canada charged DND for an alleged violation of the Fisheries Act.

Of the $100,000 penalty, $98,000 will be directed to the Government of Canada’s Environmental Damages Fund, the ruling said.

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