St. Lawerence Beluga population at risk

Photo: Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)

Photo: Darryl Dyck/Canadian Press)

Marine scientists in Quebec are raising alarms that TransCanada Corp.’s proposed Energy East pipeline project will threaten falling beluga populations in the St. Lawrence River.

TransCanada is conducting seismic activity near Cacouna, Que., on the south shore of the St. Lawrence River across from the mouth of the Saguenay River. Belugas are believed to calve in the Cacouna area in the late spring and early summer.

Dr. Stéphane Lair, the Québec regional director of the Canadian Wildlife Health Cooperative commented “Our concern now is that we know that belugas are sensitive to noise and we are concerned that all the construction activities that are going to be associated with that project will have an impact on these females … The population has been in really bad shape and this could be the end.”

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