N.S. group seeks data on October effluent leak from Northern Pulp pipeline

A group opposing a plan to pump millions of litres of treated effluent through a pipeline into the Northumberland Strait is calling on the Nova Scotia government to answer questions about an Oct. 21 leak from the existing system.

Friends of the Northumberland Strait issued a news release today saying its membership is frustrated that after more than three months, the province has released no information about the size or cause of the leak near Pictou, N.S.

Jill Graham-Scanlan, president of the group, says the public should be told the composition of the effluent that leaked and why the pipe break went initially undetected by the company.

Provincial spokeswoman Rachel Boomer says the Environment Department is still investigating, and noted a 2014 inquiry into a prior leak required a year for completion.

Mill spokeswoman Kathy Cloutier says in an email the leak was "very small in size," and added that it "did not make its way into Middle River."

She said the effluent was "contained promptly and transported to the Boat Harbour facility where it was then treated and released into the Northumberland Strait via the existing system and route."