Skip to main content

Toxic Oil Spill in English Bay - The Truth About Oil Recovery & Long-Term Effects on the Ecosystems

Resource type
Date created
In response to the oil spill in English Bay on April 8, 2015, we assembled a panel of experts from various fields, who have studied oil spills first hand. We will discuss the health, environmental and social impacts of this oil spill and how we can try to mitigate the risks.Since oil spills occur all over the world as a by-product of the extraction of resources by huge corporations. Many vulnerable people face substantial risks to their water and land that they rely on for existence. This event was a continuation of the conversation we started at the State of Extraction conference. The aim is to continue the dialogue with the community, indigenous front line land defenders and those with experience with oil spills. We hope to create a space that we can share information, ask and answer important questions and create workable solutions.Participants:• Samir Gandesha, Professor and Director of the Institute of Humanities at SFU• Shirley Samples, We Love This Coast Group and SFU Associate• Audrey Siegel, Musqueam First Nation• Taylor George-Hollis, Squamish First Nation• Doug McArthur, Director of School of Public Policy at SFU• Riki Ott, Author, PhD, School of Fisheries, U. of Wash. Oil Expert Response Expert• Anita Burke, BSc in Environmental Science/Physics, Oil Spill Response Expert• Karen G.Wristen, Executive Director,Living Oceans Society
Panelists:Riki Ott is a very well known oil spill expert and author. She has a Ph.D (1985) from the School of Fisheries at the University of Washington, WA, on the effects of heavy metals on benthic invertebrates. She is Co-director of Ultimate Civics, a project of Earth Island Institute. She was an Expert witness in the State of Alaska on certain issues relating to effects, fate and transportation of marine oil spills, and environmentally sensitive areas in the Copper River Delta. She co-founded and was Vice-chair of Oiled Regions of Alaska Foundation (2001–2009) to help Exxon Valdez oil spill claimants with financial management and charitable giving to rebuild oiled communities. She was on site of the Exxon Valdez spill 26 years ago. She is particularly well versed on the use of dispersants such as Corexit.Anita M. Burke holds a Bachelors of Science in Environmental Science and Physics from Northland College, where she was recently awarded their Alumni Environmental Achievement Award. At the University of Minnesota, Ms. Burke completed graduate course work in Physics. Anita has extensive experience responding to and restoring ecosystems ravaged by large scale industrial and natural disasters. Her emergency response experience includes: EXXON Valdez; Shell Refinery – Fidalgo Bay, Washington; Texaco Refinery – Bakersfield California; Ms. Burke served as General Manager and Senior Project Manager for the waste management and on-land site assessment activities associated with the clean up of the EXXON Valdez oil spill in Prince William Sound. She also served as the Chairperson of the Anchorage, Alaska Hazardous Materials Commission and Chair of the Anchorage Local Emergency Planning Committee under SARA Title III. Ms. Burke also managed ENSR Consulting and Engineering’s Anchorage, Alaska Hazardous Waste Services Division for three years, where she developed an expertise in arctic exploration and production spill response and environmental issue management. In 2001, Ms. Burke left her career in the oil and gas industry due to complications and health. She has been on the frontlines of some of the world’s most devastating oil spills. She will share her insight into the health effects, ecosystem impacts, and how we can survive and thrive amidst the trauma of the English Bay Oil Spill. She is a trained Incident Commander and holds numerous health and safety certifications.Professor Doug McArthur, Director, School of Public Policy, Simon Fraser University. Prior to joining SFU’s Public Policy Program as a founding member in 2003, Doug McArthur was Senior Fellow in Public Policy at the University of British Columbia. His areas of research and teaching include public policy theory and process, government management, forest and resources policy, First Nations policy and self-government, as well as negotiations and strategic planning.Karen G.Wristen is Executive Director of Living Oceans Society, a non-profit ocean conservation organization based in Sointula, B.C. She holds a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Toronto and a law degree from Osgoode Hall. She has worked in the environmental movement in British Columbia since 1994. Karen joined the staff of Living Oceans in 2012 after serving as its Treasurer since 1998. Living Oceans is Canada’s largest organization working exclusively on marine conservation. She took on the Energy & Climate Change portfolio and has been actively involved in the assessments of the Northern Gateway and TransMountain pipeline and tanker proposals, working directly with expert witnesses, reviewing and preparing evidence for those hearings. Living Oceans provided expert evidence on, inter alia, oil tankers, oil spill response, the fate and behaviour of diluted bitumen in the marine environment and the international oil spill compensation regime. She has also provided input to the Province of British Columbia on its proposed land-based oil spill response regime. She is dedicated to protecting the Salish Sea!
Published as
Toxic Oil Spill in English Bay - The Truth About Oil Recovery & Long-Term Effects on the Ecosystems
Publication details
Document title
Toxic Oil Spill in English Bay - The Truth About Oil Recovery & Long-Term Effects on the Ecosystems
Copyright statement
Copyright is held by the author(s).
Scholarly level
Peer reviewed?

Views & downloads - as of June 2023

Views: 16
Downloads: 0