If you were ever planning a visit to North America, one of the places that many say glows with its natural beauty is the city of Halifax, in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia (located in the cou
If you were ever planning a visit to North America, one of the places that many say glows with its natural beauty is the city of Halifax, in the Canadian province of Nova Scotia (located in the country’s Maritime provinces near the Atlantic coast). Its harbour, located adjacent to the city’s downtown area, echoes that natural beauty many speak of, since its founding as a port city in 1749. Boat tours of the harbour are offered according to the Visit Nova Scotia web site, offering a glimpse of what the harbour has to offer.
However, at the same time, it has had a couple of concerns, most recently this past week, after diesel fuel spilled into the harbour from one of the Royal Canadian Navy’s frigate ships, the HMCS St. John’s. This incident was the second in two years, according to a report from the Canadian public broadcaster CBC, when in 2011 fuel spilled from the supply ship HMCS Preserver as it was being refuelled.
Lieutenant Commander Bruno Tremblay of the Navy in Halifax said 8,000 to 10,000 litres of diesel fuel spilled into the harbour when it began to leak early on the morning of May 8, but confirmed to Kettle that the work cleaning up the harbour was complete by 1:30 Atlantic Standard Time (5:30 British Summer Time) May 10. Tremblay added that the Navy was working with its partners at the federal environment agency Environment Canada when it came to the assessment and investigation of cleaning up the harbour, and why the fuel leaked in the first place.
It had earlier been reported that Environment Canada had ordered a fly-over of a crew from the federal agency Transport Canada. A spokeswoman for Transport Canada, based in the capital Ottawa, said the agency did not have a role in the clean-up efforts of the harbour.
Tremblay added that there were no restrictions of access for members of the public, and a line had been established to report any environmental issues. There was one call so far to the line as of May 10, Tremblay said.
It is not clear if it had any immediate impact on tourism or visitation in the areas. Calls to the provincial government of Nova Scotia, Nova Scotia’s tourism agency and the Halifax Regional Municipality where the harbour is based seeking comment were not returned. Additionally, a request to Environment Canada, based in the province of Quebec, seeking comment was not returned prior to the filing of this piece.
The harbour remains a standing point for tourism in Halifax and in Nova Scotia, and help allows someone to understand what makes this part of the world so special, what makes its culture on the coast distinct from other places, and what makes it stand out not just in Canada but in the whole of North American continent. The harbour may have had its history of spills from ships, but the inner beauty of the harbour will not be stopped by a spill.
To those who live in the province and those who visit the province and experience it, it shines through, day in and day out.