Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Federal Contamination Cleanup Tab Climbs to $5.8 Billion: Public Accounts

Newspaper article The Canadian Press

Federal Contamination Cleanup Tab Climbs to $5.8 Billion: Public Accounts

Article excerpt

Federal cleanup tab climbs to $5.8 billion

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OTTAWA - The federal government is on the hook for at least $5.8 billion in cleanup costs for thousands of contaminated sites -- up from about $4.8 billion last year.

The latest issue of the public accounts, covering the last fiscal year, says the liability stems from former mining sites, radioactive material, military operations, landfills and other contaminated properties.

The government has identified 2,400 sites where decontamination efforts may be needed, accounting for the estimated cost of $5.8 billion.

However, the accounts say 6,200 other sites have not yet been assessed -- meaning the total cleanup bill could be much higher.

Two hundred of those 6,200 sites have been flagged as high priority for action because they represent a higher risk to human health and the environment, and are at various stages of testing and evaluation. …

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