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Entry Island: dredged sediments are contaminated

Îles de la Madeleine

The sand removed from the entrance to Entry Island harbour during the dredging work carried out earlier this month will remain stored in the wharf area for an indefinite period.

The reason is that the sediment is contaminated with metals, specifically chromium and nickel, said Cédric Arseneau, director of the Fisheries and Oceans sector office.

He explains that an agreement with the Municipality of the Islands authorizes the storage of sand on the old dump, but that the large volume, about 1200 m3, required an overflow in a nearby site with the authorization of the local harbour association.

He ensures that it is safe for dock users.

The source of the contamination is still unknown at this point, he stresses, and DFO, in collaboration with other departments, is currently conducting tests on the sediment.

Mr. Arseneau said that the procedure for disposing of it will depend on the results, which does not rule out relocating the sand elsewhere on the archipelago.

Without being able to provide a timeline, he admits that the removal of sediment from the sites will not be possible before the start of the lobster fishery.

He mentioned that a second phase of dredging at Entry Island is planned after the season.

He added that he was confident that the dredging of Grosse-Île and Millerand harbours would be completed before May 7.

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