Burrard inlet industrial pollution
Credit: Sherwood411/Flickr

A portrait of pollution around Canada’s busiest port

The Tsleil-Waututh Nation is pushing for stricter regulations to protect Burrard Inlet from industrial pollution, as a leaked video highlights the challenges of enforcement.

Ainslie Cruickshank reports for The Narwhal.


In short:

  • Toxic waste, sewage, and industrial chemicals pollute Burrard Inlet, making shellfish unsafe to eat and limiting recreational use.
  • The Tsleil-Waututh Nation has co-developed new water quality standards with the B.C. government to restore the inlet and allow safe seafood harvesting.
  • A leaked video of a coal spill at Neptune Terminals raises concerns about unreported spills and ongoing contamination.

Key quote:

“The establishment of these water quality objectives, using this more risk-based approach that recognizes coastal Indigenous lifeways, I think that’s already a really exciting and important step.”

— Amanda Giang, assistant professor in the Institute for Resources, Environment and Sustainability at the University of British Columbia

Why this matters:

Addressing the severe pollution in Burrard Inlet is important for public health and the environment, reflecting the conflicting industrial pollution and Indigenous rights. The successful implementation of new water quality standards could serve as a model for other polluted waterways. Read more: “Stop hurting us:” Protestors plead for their health outside a Pittsburgh gathering of coal and steel execs.

Fossil fuel plant releasing air pollution
Photo by Ella Ivanescu on Unsplash

Climate change linked to an increased risk of cardiovascular issues, including death

Exposure to environmental stressors related to climate change - such as extreme weather and high temperatures - is associated with a higher risk of cardiovascular disease, according to a review of 492 studies published in JAMA Cardiology.
Keep reading...Show less
Senator Whitehouse & climate change

Senator Whitehouse puts climate change on budget committee’s agenda

For more than a decade, Senator Sheldon Whitehouse gave daily warnings about the mounting threat of climate change. Now he has a powerful new perch.
Amid LNG’s Gulf Coast expansion, community hopes to stand in its way
Coast Guard inspects Cameron LNG Facility in preparation for first LNG export in 2019. (Credit: Coast Guard News)

Amid LNG’s Gulf Coast expansion, community hopes to stand in its way

This 2-part series was co-produced by Environmental Health News and the journalism non-profit Economic Hardship Reporting Project. See part 1 here.Este ensayo también está disponible en español
Keep reading...Show less
geoengineering research
Credit: VectorMine/BigStock Photo ID: 436555070

UChicago’s climate initiative explores controversial solar geoengineering

The University of Chicago has launched a Climate Systems Engineering initiative, aiming to explore solar geoengineering, despite the controversial nature and potential risks of the field.

Jessica McKenzie reports for the Bulletin of the Atomic Scientists.

Keep reading...Show less

Most marine protected areas fail to offer true protection

A new study reveals that the majority of the world's largest marine protected areas (MPAs) fail to implement effective conservation measures, allowing destructive activities to persist.

Bing Lin reports for Inside Climate News.

Keep reading...Show less
George Woodwell obituary
Credit: Woodwell Climate Research Center

George Woodwell, climate change pioneer and ecologist, passes away at 95

George Woodwell, founder of the Woods Hole Research Center, whose influential work shaped U.S. environmental policies, died at 95.

Keith Schneider reports for The New York Times.

Keep reading...Show less

The world sets new record for fossil fuel use in 2023

Despite the rise of renewable energy, global fossil fuel consumption hit a record high last year, pushing CO2 emissions to more than 40 gigatonnes.

Jillian Ambrose reports for The Guardian.

Keep reading...Show less

Pilgrims in Saudi Arabia die during Hajj amid intense heat

Hundreds of pilgrims died during this year's Hajj in Saudi Arabia due to extreme heat, with officials remaining silent on the death toll and causes.

Samy Magdy reports for Associated Press.

Keep reading...Show less
From our Newsroom
nurses climate change

Op-ed: In a warming world, nurses heal people and the planet

Nurses have the experience, motivation and public support to make an important contribution in tackling the climate crises.

planetary health diet

This diet will likely keep you alive longer — and help the planet

New research finds the Planetary Health Diet lowers our risk to most major causes of death.

environmental justice

LISTEN: Jose Ramon Becerra Vera on democratizing science

“In their own way, they’re becoming experts, not just of their experiences but also of the data collection process.”

The oil and gas industry’s radioactive problem: Q&A with Justin Nobel

The oil and gas industry’s radioactive problem: Q&A with Justin Nobel

“Of all the levels of radium in produced water or brine around the world that I’ve looked at, I have encountered none that are consistently as high as what comes out of the Marcellus Shale.”

Stay informed: sign up for The Daily Climate newsletter
Top news on climate impacts, solutions, politics, drivers. Delivered to your inbox week days.