The project Gazoduq could threaten the survival of the beluga, according to the GREMM

Le projet Gazoduq pourrait menacer la survie du béluga, selon le GREMM

Photo: GREMM
The beluga whale is an animal, mostly acoustic, that depends on sound to navigate and find their food

The project of gas pipeline and liquefied natural gas (LNG) in the Saguenay, together with other projects underway, could jeopardize the survival of the beluga, supports a group of scientific research.

The Group for research and education on marine mammals (GREMM) calls for an assessment of the combined impact of all the projects of maritime transport currently on the table.

The claim of the GREMM in the same sense that a report of the ministry of the Environment, including the minister Benoit Charette has publicly dissociated. This synthesis of 272 pages summarizing the public consultations on the draft of the Saguenay called Gazoduq.

The project Gazoduq involves the construction of a gas pipeline of 750 km stretch from Ontario to a liquefaction plant in Saguenay, then route the LNG in Europe.

One of the observations set out in the report is the” cumulative effects assessment “, that is to say that it should not be analysed in isolation from the impact of the project Gazoduq, but rather its sum with other projects, including Ariane Phosphate and BlackRock Metals, because the maritime traffic would increase, and a total of 300 per cent on the Saguenay, and 10 % in the estuary.

However, it is “troubling” for the critical habitat of beluga whales that governments are yet committed to protect, explained the scientific director of GREMM), Robert Michaud, in an interview with The canadian Press published Sunday.

He said that this significant increase in navigation will result in an increase in noise, while the beluga whale is an animal, mostly acoustic, that depends on sound to navigate and find their food. Similarly, the stress caused by noise has adverse effects on his vital functions, like the immune system and the reproductive system.

Mr. Michaud has launched a call for patience and prudence, is to wait a few years before allowing major projects such as Gazoduq, the time of the research projects funded by Quebec and the federal government currently underway are completed.