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Planet Ark World Environment News Ottawa to set fines for pipeline infractions

Date: 18-Feb-13
Country: CANADA
Author: Jeffrey Jones

Canadian regulators are getting the power to fine companies and individuals who contravene pipeline and nuclear safety rules, the country's natural resources minister said on Friday.

Under the proposed regulations, the National Energy Board and Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission will be able to fine individuals up to C$25,000 ($25,000) and corporations C$100,000 for each day they are out of compliance.

Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver also said the government is increasing energy board inspections of oil and gas pipelines by 50 percent to 150 a year, and doubling the number of comprehensive audits to six annually.

Canada has 825,000 km (513,000 miles) of underground oil and gas pipelines, according to the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association.

"Through these measures and the proposed Administrative Monetary Penalty Regulations, which are expected to be in place in July 2013, we are further strengthening safety and environmental protection," Oliver said in a statement.

(Reporting by Jeffrey Jones; Editing by Marguerita Choy)

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