Pollution, but no penalty

technicien-salubrite-environnement-ville-bel(Quebec) An inspector of the City of Quebec concludes that “there is presence of air pollution in the Limoilou sector” and that this contravenes the law on nuisances. The City, however, prevents complainants that it does not intend to crack down because the provincial regulations take precedence and because it fears a legal battle with the Port of Quebec.

The couple formed Veronica Lalande and Louis Duchesne – who launched the Citizens’ Initiative vigilance of the Port of Quebec and filed a class action for dust episodes, red or not – this was invoked Article 22 of Regulation nuisances. This identifies nuisance as “the production of dust or particles in the air to disturb the neighborhood.”

A survey was carried out by a municipal inspector and a report was written, but the complainant had not received a copy. They had to apply for access to information to get a half months after it was signed and delivered to the Management Division of the territory. The Sun has been able to see too.

The safety-environmental technician tells how he went to the Lalande-Duchesne residence once a week from 13 August to 10 September to take samples. It warns that the artisanal method was, it did not meet the more restrictive regulatory protocol.

Nevertheless, he notes that “there is presence of contamination from a handling of ferrous materials, as fine dust collected daily samples were glued to a magnet. In addition, wood dust are present and easily identifiable to the naked eye. ”

Several photos are attached to the document. We see the soiled residences, a ladder aluminum stained red, samples containing very dark dust and small wood chips.

The inspector also photographed what was happening at the port of Quebec these days, to realize that there were huge mounds of ores and short wood chips. He noted that “the coloring of wood chips is identical to that found in the Limoilou sector”. He also witnessed the solid bulk handling with mechanical shovels. “All these operations are performed in the open air, and the winds were 20 km / h during my visit,” he wrote.

For odors, the main suspect is the White Birch mill, located in the port zone. “The smell that spreads Limoilou, which causes complaints from residents comes from the settling ponds and especially the primary basin”, establishes the technician.

Recommendations

In its recommendations, the author proposes in particular to “further analysis of contaminants in air Limoilou” added green spaces and “influence companies so that their polluting operations by wind erosion and the dispersion of particles in the air are avoided. ”

In a separate letter dated October 29, the director of the Division of Land Management, Alain Perron, Louis Duchesne however, warns that “Quebec City will not issue offense”.

The regulation on pollution provides that “anyone who creates or leaves a nuisance within the meaning of the Regulation […] commits an offense and is liable to a fine, the amount is, in the case of a natural person $ 1,000 and, in the case of a legal person, $ 2,000. ” Always add court costs. The amount doubles in case of recurrence. When the problem is perpetuated in time, every day generates a separate fine.

“The fact is that a law that bears on an already governed by a regulation subject under the Environmental Quality Act is inoperative,” explains Mr. Perron for not punishing.

The municipal framework also refers to the opponent because the Québec Port Authority, IMTT his tenant, and the Quebec government, whose interventions in port territory are disputed. “The City would face the same constitutional arguments to enforce its rules and should for its part take legal saga well underway at the provincial level,” he says.

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