Ongoing Situations

Safety Booms to be Installed at Harvie Passage

April 27, 2017 - 3:00 p.m.

Boaters and water recreationists are reminded that Harvie Passage on the Bow River remains closed to the public.

Calgary’s Harvie Passage sustained significant damage during the 2013 flood and remains closed to boaters and recreationists until repairs are complete.

The Alberta government will install three seasonal safety barriers over the weekend of April 29, with support from the Calgary Fire Department. The booms, orange buoys connected by chains spanning the entire width of the passage, are deployed as an added safety precaution to prevent boater access to the passage.

The barriers will be located upstream of the passage near the CP Rail bridge, upstream of the Diversion Headworks and downstream of the Diversion Headworks.

Release of Diesel to a Waterbody near Ardrossan

April 26, 2017 - 7:15 p.m.

April 21, Alberta Environment and Parks (AEP) received a report that an unknown volume of diesel had been released from a tank with an approximate 1900 litre capacity. The released fluid migrated off location down the roadside ditches and into a seasonal watercourse ending in an unnamed waterbody. The spill pathway is approximately 300 metres long.

AEP's Environment and Parks' Support and Emergency Response Team has taken over the lead for the response to the release from the responsible party as of April 24. This has included contracting an emergency response company to manage contracted resources and site management for the ongoing response.

AEP is working with the response company and contracted resources on site. Ongoing activities include the placement of more stationary mitigation measures, continued fluid recovery with absorbent booms and pads and the completion of a detailed site assessment including site sampling. The installation of site fencing, and wildlife mitigation measures is being completed.

Bear Warning – Fortress Junction Service Station

April 24, 2017

A bear warning has been posted for the area near the Fortress Junction Service Station. A grizzly bear has been frequenting the area. Caution is advised; carrying bear spray is highly recommended.

For more information, visit the Alberta Parks website at:

Bow River Watershed Infected with Whirling Disease

February 10, 2017

The Canadian Food Inspection Agency (CFIA) has declared the Bow River watershed infected with whirling disease and the province of Alberta a buffer zone.

The CFIA’s announcement covers all streams, creeks, lakes and rivers that feed into the Bow River. This includes water bodies in Banff National Park, the Elbow River and the Bow River itself. The affected zone ends at the confluence of the Bow River and South Saskatchewan River.

The declaration requires that provincial aquaculture facilities and Class A fish farms, which cultivate salmonids, will have to test fish for whirling disease and implement approved biosecurity protocols in order to obtain a permit from CFIA to stock fish from the infected area.

Moving Forward

  • There are currently no plans to make changes that will affect fishing in the Bow River.
  • The ongoing objective, related to whirling disease in Alberta’s wild fish populations, is detection and delineation, and where possible, containment.
  • Public engagement and education are essential to help stop the spread of whirling disease in Alberta. Actions include:
    • Posting educational materials and decontamination instructions on the Environment and Parks website and distribution through social media
    • Using Aquatic Invasive Species watercraft inspection stations to provide education materials to boaters and anglers
    • Providing online updates of sample results and locations
    • Working with stakeholders, such as the Alberta Fish and Game Association and the Alberta Angling Outfitters, to communicate with its members and the public about preventing the spread of whirling disease
    • Using existing "Clean, Drain and Dry" education campaign materials to prevent the spread of whirling disease by anglers and boaters

Some of the ways Alberta is helping prevent the spread of whirling disease

  • Examining potential legislative tools that could help stop the spread of the disease
  • Using existing legislation to prevent the spread of aquatic invasive species, such as the drain plug rule for motorized boats (all watercraft must have their drain plugs pulled while in transport), prohibition of releasing live fish and water and mandatory watercraft inspection stations

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