Canadian officials are visiting Albany today in an effort to convince state officials to bag tough ballast water regulations designed to stop the importation of new invasive species.
Tanker ballast on ships plying the St. Lawrence Seaway and the Great Lakes is widely blamed for introduction of non-native species including zebra mussels that proved a scourge in North America.
But Canadian officials say New York rules violate their sovereignty and threatens the region’s economy. This from the Watertown Daily Times this morning.
Pierre Poilievre, the parliamentary secretary to the minister of Transport, Infrastructure and Communities, said he plans to meet with “decision makers” and shipping industry representatives to corral opposition to New York’s ballast standard, aimed at keeping invasive species out of the Seaway but which shippers say could effectively shut down the international waterway.
“We do not believe the Seaway can remain open” if the rules are implemented as planned in 2013, Mr. Poilievre told reporters in a news conference call. “If New York goes ahead with these regulations, the economic damage would be massive.”
The ballast water rule has bipartisan support in the North Country.
But the Cuomo administration also faces intensive pressure from American lawmakers in the Great Lakes region. The Coast Guard and the US EPA are expected to unveil national ballast water rules later this month. Read the full article here.