An investigation initiated by Environment Canada confirmed a report from Irving Pulp and Paper Limited that over 600,000 litres of green liquor, a bi-product of the pulp and paper process which is harmful to fish, was released into the Saint John River on October 31, 2007.
On April 9, 2009, charges were laid by Environment Canada against the company for violating subsection 36(3) of the Fisheries Act, which prohibits the release of a substance harmful to fish into fish-bearing waters.
The court assessed a payment of $71,250 from the penalty to the Atlantic Coastal Action Program (ACAP) Saint John organization. ACAP Saint John is a community-based non-profit organization that encourages local involvement from all sectors of the Saint John community. The two primary goals of ACAP Saint John are to work with the community to improve the environmental health and integrity of the Saint John Harbour and its estuaries, and to respond to the growing demand from the public to be more involved in environmental decision making. The money from the penalty will be specifically directed to the organization's environmental restoration efforts at Hazen Creek and Marsh Creek.
The remaining $3,750 penalty constitutes a fine paid to the court.