Oil-like substance in river remains a mystery as Environment Canada continues to investigate

Agency said all possibilities, including natural sources, are being considered

Environment and Climate Change Canada continues to investigate a substance, which appears to be oil, in the North Thompson River.

“ECCC continues to gather information on this matter and is considering all possibilities, including natural sources,” ECCC spokesperson Catherine Burge said in a one-sentence emailed statement, when asked for an update.

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KTW is awaiting followup on that statement as to what natural sources are being considered.

The investigation comes after Westsyde resident Rick Prescott notified KTW about the substance, which has been spotted floating on the water’s surface and along the shoreline off Overlander Drive and Harrington Road.

He said he has seen the rainbow-coloured substance on walks with his dog since he moved to Westsyde in early summer. It covers a half-kilometre stretch.

Trans Mountain told KTW the substance in the river did not originate from its pipeline in Westsyde.

"After learning today that Environment Canada and Climate Change is assessing reports of an oil-like substance in the North Thompson River, Trans Mountain sent staff to investigate in the area," a company spokesperson said.

"There is no indication that the source of the substance is from the pipeline. If the public notices oil-like substances, strong odours or other suspicious activity near our pipeline, we encourage them to call the Trans Mountain Emergency line at 1.888.876.6711. More information can be found at transmountain.com/emergency-contact."

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