A Nov. 6 view of the site in Port Hardy where a 10,800-square foot Canadian Coast Guard Environmental Response Depot is now under construction. (Zoe Ducklow photo)

A Nov. 6 view of the site in Port Hardy where a 10,800-square foot Canadian Coast Guard Environmental Response Depot is now under construction. (Zoe Ducklow photo)

Construction of Port Hardy Coast Guard facility underway

$8.8-million environmental response depot will accelerate response to fuel spills

Construction has begun on a new Coast Guard facility in Port Hardy that will increase response capacity to fuel spills and other marine pollution incidents in the waters around northern Vancouver Island and B.C.’s central coast.

The $8.8-million, 10,800-square foot environmental response depot will provide office space and storage space for response vessels and a suite of new equipment, in addition to a large drive-on floating dock for easly loading.

Since January 2019, the Coast Guard has responded to 38 marine pollution incidents in the Port Hardy area. Environmental response staff working out of a temporary facility since 2018.

The Coast Guard is working on the project with the support of the Kwakiutl First Nation and the District of Port Hardy.

“This much needed response depot will respond to spills and protect our ocean and foreshore ecosystems,” Dennis Dugas, mayor of Port Hardy said.”

READ MORE: Coast Guard rescue stranded boaters from island

The new building will 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.

The project is funded through the $1.5-billion Oceans Protection Plan, billed as the largest investment ever made to protect Canada’s coasts and waterways.

In a statement Nov. 6, Bernadette Jordan, Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard, said the funding is crucial if Canada is to responsd quickly an effectively to environmental emergencies.

“This new facility in Port Hardy will help ensure the Coast Guard is ready and able to manage any incidents off northern Vancouver Island and along the central coast of British Columbia,” Jordan said. “The Pacific coastline is home to some of Canada’s richest ecosystems and most beautiful landscapes, and we are going to protect it for generations to come.”

Once complete sometime in the fall of 2021, the new depot will be staffed by three environmental specialists and house an asortment of new offshore response equipment, response vessels, skimmers, curtain booms and storage barges for recovered oil.

READ MORE: Coast Guard calling for radio officers



quinn.bender@blackpress.ca

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

BC Ferries experienced heavy traffic on Feb. 27 following cancellations the day before due to strong winds and adverse weather. (Black Press Media file photo)
BC Ferries sailings fill up quickly after cancellations on Friday due to high winds

Waits expected on Swartz Bay-Tsawwassen route, Horseshoe Bay-Departure Bay route

(Black Press Media file photo)
Saanich police seek suspect after woman nearly robbed while getting out of vehicle

Incident occurred before 7 a.m. Feb. 17 in parking lot off Cordova Bay Road

Saskatoon resident liajah Pidskalny poses with his bike near the University of Victoria after putting on thousands of kilometres to raise awareness of the overdose and mental health crisis. (Courtesy Iliajah Pidskalny)
Saskatoon cyclist winds up mental health and overdose awareness ride in Victoria

Iliajah Pidskalny braves prairie winter conditions to get word out to communities

Gabriel Swift, 23, is one of three Victoria filmmakers chosen to receive $20,000 Telus Storyhive grants to produce Local Heroes documentaries. (Courtesy of Gabriel Swift)
Three Victoria filmmakers producing ‘local heroes’ documentaries with $20,000 grants

Telus Storyhive providing $20,000 to 40 Western Canada productions

Goldstream Food Bank president Gayle Ireland is the Goldstream Gazette’s 2021 Local Hero as Community Volunteer of the Year. (Don Denton/Black Press Media)
Two-week stint at Goldstream Food Bank turns into 35 years of volunteer service

Goldstream Food Bank’s Gayle Ireland is the 2021 Community Volunteer of the Year

Abbotsford’s Kris Collins turned to TikTok out of boredom when the provincial COVID-19 lockdown began in March 2020. She now has over 23 million followers on the video app. Photo: Submitted
Internet famous: Abbotsford’s Kris Collins is a TikTok comedy queen

Collins has found surprise stardom alone with a phone

Nanaimo children’s author and illustrator Lindsay Ford’s latest book is ‘Science Girl.’ (Photo courtesy Lindsay Ford)
B.C. children’s writer encourages girls to pursue the sciences in new book

Lindsay Ford is holding a virtual launch for latest book, ‘Science Girl’

Pig races at the 145th annual Chilliwack Fair on Aug. 12, 2017. Monday, March 1, 2021 is Pig Day. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Unofficial holidays: Here’s what people are celebrating for the week of Feb. 28 to March 6

Pig Day, Canadian Bacon Day and Grammar Day are all coming up this week

Staff from the Marine Mammal Rescue Centre, passersby, RCMP and Nanaimo Fire Rescue carried a sick 300-kilogram steller sea lion up the steep bluff at Invermere Beach in north Nanaimo in an attempt to save the animal’s life Thursday. (Photo courtesy Marine Mammal Rescue Centre)
300-kilogram sea lion muscled up from B.C. beach in rescue attempt

Animal dies despite efforts of Nanaimo marine mammal rescue team, emergency personnel and bystanders

Doctors and counsellors warn of an increase in panic attacks, anxiety, depression and suicide ideas between ages 10 to 14, in Campbell River. ( Black Press file photo)
Extended pandemic feeding the anxieties of B.C.’s youth

Parents not sure what to do, urged to reach out for help

Gina Adams as she works on her latest piece titled ‘Undying Love’. (Submitted photo)
‘Toothless’ the kitty inspires B.C. wood carver to break out the chainsaw

Inspired by plight of a toothless cat, Gina Adams offers proceeds from her artwork to help animals

B.C. Finance Minister Selina Robinson presents bill to delay B.C.’s budget as late as April 30, and allow further spending before that, B.C. legislature, Dec. 8, 2020. (Hansard TV)
How big is B.C.’s COVID-19 deficit? We’ll find out April 20

More borrowing expected as pandemic enters second year

The first of 11 Dash 8 Q400 aircraft's have arrived in Abbotsford. Conair Group Inc. will soon transform them into firefighting airtankers. (Submitted)
Abbotsford’s Conair begins airtanker transformation

Aerial firefighting company creating Q400AT airtanker in advance of local forest fire season

The Canada Revenue Agency says there were 32 tax fraud convictions across the country between April 2019 and March 2020. (Pixabay)
Vancouver man sentenced to 29 months, fined $645K for tax evasion, forgery

Michael Sholz reportedly forged documents to support ineligible tax credits linked to homeownership

Most Read