In June 2005, the Minister of the Environment approved a Comprehensive Study Report that allowed for BEPCo. to drill three exploratory wells (with associated seismic) on Exploration License (EL) 2407 in the offshore of Nova Scotia. Pending the results of exploratory drilling, the approval also permitted BEPCo. to follow-up with three delineation/appraisal wells (a total of 6 wells may be drilled). The Canada-Nova Scotia Offshore Petroleum Board (CNSOPB) was the Responsible Authority and DFO provided expert advice (DFO 2004). The work was to be carried out from 2005-2009. Following approval, however, BEPCo. postponed the Project.
Recently, BEPCo. has returned to the CNSOPB to request allowance that the Project proceed from 2009-2015. The nature of the Project remains the same as that approved in 2005, although the proposed Project lease area has been reduced in size by approximately 50%. Prior to approving the request, the CNSOPB has asked that BEPCo. verify that the predictions remain valid regarding the Valued Ecosystem Components (VECs) used in their initial Environmental Assessment (EA) that was approved.
DFO was asked by the CNSOPB to provide advice on the accuracy of a report entitled "BEPCo Update on the Environmental Assessment Report: Exploratory Drilling on EL 2407" by 25 May 2009. On 5 May 2009, DFO Science was asked the following questions:
Given the short timeframe for review, the Science Special Response Process was used to produce this Science Response.
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