Thursday, April 24, 2014
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First Nation says six sites at oilsands project leaking bitumen, up from four

BY THE CANADIAN PRESS

COLD LAKE, Alta. — A First Nation says two more locations at an oilsands project in northeastern Alberta are seeping oily bitumen, bringing the total to six.

Chief Bernice Martial says she is worried about how such leaks are affecting the aquifers underneath the land.

Martial says she is worried about the safety of drinking water, animals and vegetation.

In July, Canadian Natural Resources Ltd. said a mechanical failure at an old well was behind ongoing bitumen seepage at its oilsands project on the Cold Lake Air Weapons Range.

The Calgary-based company said the damage from the four locations had been contained and the sites were being cleaned up.

At the time, almost one million litres of bitumen had leaked into the bush and muskeg and another 2,400 litres was seeping in every day.

“Our people want answers and factual information on the contamination of now, six surface releases of bitumen oil,” Martial said in a release Monday.

Canadian Natural Resources officials were not immediately available for comment.

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