09/12/2013 06:28 EDT | Updated 11/12/2013 05:12 EST

Fraser Surrey Docks Ordered To Assess Health And Environmental Effects Of Coal Project


VANCOUVER - Port Metro Vancouver has ordered the Fraser Surrey Docks to assess the effects of a coal project on the health of humans and the ecology before it gives approval to the proposed Lower Mainland export facility.

Fraser Surrey Docks along the Fraser River wants to build a direct-transfer facility that will handle two million metric tonnes of coal annually, increasing to four million metric tonnes within five years,

But Darrell Desjardin, director of environment and sustainability for Port Metro Vancouver, says the port has initiated an environmental review process.

The port — which will issue permits to the facility — wants railway companies and the Surrey dock to address the issue of dust migration from rail cars and barges.

The port is also asking Fraser Surrey Docks to revise its proposal so a temporary coal stockpile at the proposed facility is not necessary.

James Crandles, the director of planning and development for Port Metro Vancouver, says he expects it will take several weeks to complete the work and the environmental impact assessment will be made public.

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