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Engineering firm fined $1M over B.C. spill linked to 85 trout deaths

Keller Foundations Ltd. was ordered to pay over 2018 incident in West Vancouver
Rainbow trout, photo taken by Laryn Gilmour

A British Columbia court has ordered an international engineering firm to pay a $1-million fine for releasing a harmful substance that flowed into a Metro Vancouver creek, after an investigation into the deaths of dozens of fish.

A statement from Environment and Climate Change Canada says Keller Foundations Ltd. was ordered to pay the penalty last month, after the company pleaded guilty in B.C. provincial court to one charge over violations of the federal Fisheries Act.

The department says the investigation into the deaths of about 85 cutthroat trout in April 2018 found Keller’s construction activities led to a discharge of concrete leachate into groundwater that flowed into Larson Creek in West Vancouver.

It says much of the substance had elevated pH levels that are known to be harmful to fish, including cutthroat trout.

As a result of the conviction, the department says the company’s name will be added to the Environmental Offenders Registry and the fine will go toward Canada’s environmental damages fund.

A Vancouver-based representative of the company, which is headquartered in the United Kingdom, did not immediately respond to a request for comment on the ruling.

READ MORE: $213K fine issued to Coastal GasLink pipeline for environmental breach in northwest B.C.

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