The air quality has ‘been a cause for concern for the people of this community since 1966,’ says Fort McKay First Nation chief
By Nika Knight, staff writer for Common Dreams. Published 9-22-2016
The toxins discovered in the air include “hydrogen sulphide and carcinogens like benzene,” writes the Canadian Press. “Ozone and sulphur dioxide were ‘frequently’ above long-term health thresholds.” (Photo: Kris Krüg/flickr/cc
Confirming what a First Nations community surrounded by tar sands development has claimed for decades, new research says the reserve in northern Alberta is suffering from air pollution that is sometimes “at levels above what is recommended for human health.”
That’s according to Alberta’s chief health minister, Karen Grimsrud, as reported by theCanadian Press.
The provincial health ministry, industry regulator (which is industry-funded), and the Fort McKay First Nation all cooperated on a study released Thursday that finally confirmed what those in Fort McKay had long asserted: air pollution from nearby tar sands mining and refining has been sickening members of their community. Continue reading