Contract awarded for dismantling the Kathryn Spirit, embankment removal, and site rehabilitation

News Release

Ottawa, Ontario – The Government of Canada has awarded a contract for the dismantling of the Kathryn Spirit, which will lead to its permanent removal from the shores of Beauharnois, Quebec. We are pleased to announce this decisive step to permanently resolve the environmental and safety concern that this vessel poses to the community of Beauharnois.

The $11,134,179 contract, awarded to Kathryn Spirit DJV, a joint venture between Excavation René St-Pierre inc. and Englobe Corp., includes full dismantling of the vessel, removal of the temporary embankment built in the winter of 2017, and rehabilitation of the site to its original state.

Dismantling of the ship is expected to be completed in the fall of 2018 with the embankment removed by the winter of 2018–2019 and the site rehabilitated by the fall of 2019. This contract has been awarded following a competitive process to a company that responded to the specific criteria outlined in the Request for Proposal, and who could complete this complex work in a way that ensures the safety of workers and the surrounding marine environment.

Since 2016, the Government of Canada has taken measures to ensure that the Kathryn Spirit does not pose an environmental risk, by initially adding cables and barges to help stabilize the vessel, prior to building a protective embankment that isolated it from the marine environment. Throughout this time, ongoing inspections of the vessel have been undertaken and security measures were put in place to ensure that it was routinely monitored.

In November 2016, the Government of Canada announced the Oceans Protection Plan, which includes a comprehensive strategy to address the situation of abandoned, neglected and wrecked ships in Canadian waters. This strategy aims reduce abandoned, derelict and wrecked vessels and minimize the associated risks of environmental harm. The implementation of this strategy will help prevent situations such as the Kathryn Spirit from happening again in the future.


Quotes

“Our government is committed to the health of our marine ecosystems—that’s why our Oceans Protection Plan includes preventive action to tackle the problem of abandoned, neglected and wrecked ships in Canadian waters. This announcement is the culmination of our commitment to the community of Beauharnois to permanently remove the remnants of the abandoned vessel Kathryn Spirit."

The Honourable Dominic LeBlanc, P.C., Q.C., M.P., Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard

“Public Services and Procurement Canada is pleased to collaborate with the Canadian Coast Guard on this contract award, conducted through an open and transparent process, ensuring best value to the Canadian taxpayer, for the dismantling and removal of the vessel Kathryn Spirit. The removal work will be achieved in an efficient and environmentally responsible manner, consistent with applicable laws and in accordance with the terms of the contract."

The Honourable Carla Qualtrough, Minister of Public Services and Procurement

"I am pleased that we have reached this important stage and that the removal of the Kathryn Spirit from the shores of Beauharnois has begun. This will give the shore back to the community and protect our coasts and the quality of our water."

The Honourable Marc Garneau, Minister of Transport

Quick Facts

  • The Kathryn Spirit was built in 1967; it was operated as a merchant vessel under the Canadian flag for many years.

  • The vessel was towed to its current site in 2011 before being sold to a Mexican company that had intended to tow it to Mexico and dismantle it there.

  • The ship was permanently abandoned there in 2015 after the bankruptcy of the Mexican company.

  • A temporary cofferdam was built in the winter of 2017 to stabilize the vessel and isolate it from the marine environment.

  • The Canadian Coast Guard is continuing to monitor the vessel site to ensure the stability of the Kathryn Spirit and the smooth running of operations.

Associated Links

Contacts

Regional Communications Branch
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
Quebec Region
media.qc@dfo-mpo.gc.ca
418-648-5474

Laura Gareau
Press Secretary
Office of the Minister
Fisheries and Oceans Canada
613-992-3474
Laura.Gareau@dfo-mpo.gc.ca

NR-HQ-17-37E

Internet: http://www.dfo-mpo.gc.ca

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