Company disputes government estimate of size of possible fuel spill in Shuswap Lake

Shuswap Lake
Image Credit: Wikipedia Commons

SHUSWAP - Exactly how much contaminated water — if any — seeped into Shuswap Lake from a plywood plant is the focus of debate.

In an advisory issued yesterday, March 15, the Interior Health Authority said an estimated several thousands of litres of run-off water containing glue and fuel products was washed into the lake.

In a written statement issued today, March 16, Canoe Forests Products disputed the size of the spill. 

“It appears some of the water may have escaped and possibly entered the Shuswap Lake shoreline. Reports, however, that ‘thousands of litres’ reached the lake are inaccurate,” the company’s statement said.

When contacted for clarification, Interior Health Authority spokesperson Michaela Swan said the estimate came from the Ministry of Environment.

“That’s the information provided to Interior Health from our partner agencies,” Swan said. “That being said, it’s certainly an ongoing investigation…. In terms of the latest information, if that’s changed at all, I wouldn’t have that information.”

Ministry of Environment spokesperson David Karn advised Wednesday morning Environment Canada is leading the investigation. Environment Canada has not yet responded to requests for information.

To contact a reporter for this story, email Charlotte Helston at or call 250-309-5230. To contact the editor, email or call 250-718-2724.

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