20 January 2012

Old Harry review delayed at proponent request #nlpoli #cdnpoli

From the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board [paragraphing changed for online readability]:

The C-NLOPB has received a request from Corridor Resources Inc. to issue a prohibition order under the Atlantic Accord legislation, which would prohibit Corridor Resources Inc., the interest owner in Exploration License 1105 (known as Old Harry) from commencing or continuing any work or activity on those portions of the offshore area subject to EL 1105 until the Board notifies the interest owner that the update of the Strategic Environmental Assessment (SEA) of the Western Newfoundland Offshore Area has been completed.

Under the Atlantic Accord Act, a prohibition order can be made by the Board in the case of an environmental or social problem of a serious nature.  A decision to make a prohibition order is a Fundamental Decision under the legislation and must therefore be ratified by both governments.  If a prohibition order is made, the environmental assessment would be placed on hold and the term of the license would be suspended.

As a result of Corridor’s request for a prohibition order, the C-NLOPB is delaying the independent review of Corridor Resources' environmental assessment of the proposed exploration drilling program for License Area 1105 until such time as the C-NLOPB has fully considered the proponent’s request.

On December 22, 2011, the C-NLOPB filed the complete environmental assessment documents for Corridor Resources’ proposed drilling program in License Area 1105 with the Independent Reviewer, Mr. Bernard Richard.  The Independent Reviewer was preparing to launch the public review process in mid-January.

The SEA for the Western Newfoundland Offshore Area was completed in 2005 and amended in 2007.  The deadline for public comments on the draft scoping document for the SEA update was January 18, 2012.

“We need to fully consider the proponent’s request for a prohibition order before proceeding with public consultations on the environmental assessment,” said Max Ruelokke, Chair and CEO of the C-NLOPB.  “We have therefore informed the Independent Reviewer, Mr. Bernard Richard, of the need to delay his plans to launch public consultations until this matter has been addressed by the Board.”

The environmental assessment documents for the project will remain on the C-NLOPB’s website for public access and review.

Media Contact:

Sean Kelly M.A., APR, FCPRS
Manager of Public Relations
(709) 778-1418
(709) 689-0713

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