George Murphy Question Period (11.28.2013)

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John’s East.
MR. MURPHY:Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

The Labrador-Island Transmission Link has passed its federal environmental assessment. Concerns remain that Nalcor plans to use Agent White to clear vegetation along the power lines right-of-way, even though 97 per cent of the cancer-causing poison ends up in groundwater.

Mr. Speaker, I ask the Minister of Environment and Conservation: What plan does her government have, her department have in place to monitor Nalcor’s use of this dangerous chemical?


MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Environment and Conservation.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS SHEA: Mr. Speaker, Agent White is not a chemical that is prescribed to be used in Newfoundland and Labrador, or in Canada.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John’s East.

MR. MURPHY: I beg to differ, Mr. Speaker, when it comes to Tordon 101.

Mr. Speaker, I ask the Minister of Environment and Conservation if she will commit to ensuring full public notification of all Nalcor’s use of Agent White including advance notice, areas sprayed, and the amounts of herbicide deployed?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Environment and Conservation.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS SHEA: Mr. Speaker, it is important to know that Tordon 101 is not Agent White. Agent White is not used in Canada or in Newfoundland and Labrador.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Member for St. John’s East.

MR. MURPHY:Thank you, Mr. Speaker.

Has Nalcor done an analysis of the cost effectiveness –

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Oh, oh!

MR. SPEAKER: Order, please!

MR. MURPHY: – of mechanical methods of vegetation control; and, if so, is it publicly available or will her department make that publicly available?

MR. SPEAKER: The hon. the Minister of Environment and Conservation.

SOME HON. MEMBERS: Hear, hear!

MS SHEA: Mr. Speaker, as with every aspect of the development of Muskrat Falls, Nalcor will follow the rules and regulations as set out by the environmental assessments and will be subject to the policies that are prescribed by the Department of Environment and Conservation.

That will be done, whether it is including pesticides or any other work that is being carried out by Nalcor.

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