Dead ducks in tailings ponds – again

This isn’t just about the ducks says Greenpeace

Less than one week after Syncrude received a $3-million fine for the deaths of 1600 birds at its toxic oilsands tailings ponds in 2008 more than 230 waterfowl were found dead at several oilsands facilities.

Alberta Environment is investigating oilsands facilities and ponds including those at Suncor Shell and Syncrude sites. Most of the dead birds are said to be at Syncrude tailings ponds as Suncor and Shell say there were a handful of dead birds found at their sites.

Syncrude has released a statement saying its bird deterrent system was working when the birds landed on roads parking lots and tailings ponds at its facilities near Fort McMurray late on Monday October 25. The birds appeared “exhausted” as they were flying through a freezing rainstorm while migrating south the company said.

Environmentalists are enraged about the deaths. “It’s obvious that the provincial and federal governments are asleep at the wheel in regulating the tarsands industry” says Mike Hudema of Greenpeace Canada. “This isn’t just about the ducks — it is about health about protecting birds animals people and communities from these toxic industries.”