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Soil from a recent landslide on the adjacent beach - Date/Photographer unknown.
12 April 2018
Fisheries Department Investigates How Soil Ended Up on Beach in South Surrey

Crescent Beach British Columbia - The federal government is investigating how soil from landslides in south Surrey is making its way from BNSF railway tracks onto an adjacent beach to the detriment of marine life.
 
Janine Malikian, spokesperson for Fisheries and Oceans Canada, said her department has received a number of complaints related to the issue.
 
She confirmed the railway has no permit or authorization under the Fisheries Act or Species at Risk Act to move slide debris onto the beach.
 
Any debris should be contained in the immediate work area, collected and "appropriately disposed of," according to applicable legislation, guidelines, and best management practices, she said.
 
The concern about soil on the beach includes the potential impact on sand lance and surf smelt breeding habitat, she said.
 
BNSF spokesman Gus Melonas insisted Wednesday that the railway does not place slide material "off of our property. We placed the debris on BNSF property, on top of our rip-rap (loose stone). Weather conditions can wash the material from the rock where placed. One of the two slides this season was caused by saturated landscape material that someone placed above our property, the weight created the slide which came onto and over our tracks and onto the beach. BNSF has geo-tech engineers on-site to inspect these situations."
 
Erik Seiz, past president of the Crescent Beach Property Owners Association, said slides are common on the bluffs next to the railway tracks between Crescent Beach and Ocean Park.
 
He agreed that a slide could flow right across the tracks and onto the beach, but also believes the narrow band of rip-rap along the tracks cannot effectively contain soil from sliding onto the beach.
 
"All I see is that the stuff from the slope side is now on the water side," he said.
 
"How it got over there, I don't know. Either way, there is an issue."
 
Larry Pynn.

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