Port Authority Announces Moratorium on Industrial Development Near Lelu Island

John Crawford

The Prince Rupert Port Authority has announced a moratorium on any industrial development in the marine area adjacent to Lelu Island -- including Flora, Agnew and Horsey Banks.

The area was the focus of intense controversy a few years ago over a now-abandoned plan by Petronas to build a liquefied natural gas export terminal on Lelu Island, which opponents feared would destroy sensitive salmon habitat in Flora Banks.

In a news release, the port says, while an environmental assessment determined the Pacific Northwest LNG project could have been developed without causing adverse environmental effects, the mitigation measures would have been complex and costly.


Port Authority President and CEO Shaun Stevenson says there are better sites available for future projects at the port, and would have broader support from stakeholders.

He says the port recognizes the importance that a healthy salmon population has to northwest communities, in particular First Nations.

Several North Coast First Nations Leaders, including Gitwilgyoots Hereditary Leader Carl Sampson Senior, Metlakatla Chief Councillor Harold Leighton and Lax Kw'alaams Mayor John Helin, welcomed the moratorium, calling it a positive step toward ensuring the sustainability of Skeena salmon populations. 

[PHOTO:  Brian Huntington]

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