Maintaining a healthy workplace environment
As a socially responsible organization, we implement prevention strategies to protect the health and safety of our employees and minimize environmental risks related to our activities.
Water and Indoor Air Quality
Preventative water quality and indoor air quality assessments are completed in our owned and leased buildings to identify potential issues and implement corrective actions as needed. Water quality tests are based on a five-year plan, whereas indoor air quality tests are done on a three-to four-year rotation.
In 2012–2013, a total of five water quality and five indoor air quality tests were conducted.
As part of the corporation’s asbestos monitoring program, we continue to complete reassessments of asbestos-containing materials in our buildings, identifying affected areas and implementing corrective measures whenever needed and ensuring proper disposal of any hazardous material.
Five assessments were completed in 2012–2013. Remediation was required in one location and has since been addressed.
We continue to participate in Health Canada’s National Radon Testing Program. To date, all levels found have been significantly below Health Canada’s limits for radon detection in buildings.
Species at Risk
As required, we carry out assessments to identify at risk species which may be affected by our operations and take appropriate corrective measures. In 2012–2013, our Transmission Division worked with the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources to replace a microwave cover on a tower in Windsor, Ontario that peregrine falcons were using as a perch. The replacement of this microwave cover allowed us to ensure that proper measures were taken, while preventing the disturbance of neighbouring peregrine falcons.
Environmental Site Assessments
Preventative Environmental Site Assessments (ESAs) are conducted to determine risk levels (and restoration costs, as needed) associated with potential contamination on our properties. These ESAs are different from those assessments required under the new CEAA 2012. ESAs completed as part of this program are for due diligence purposes.
In the last year, a total of 18 properties were assessed through Phase I and Enhanced Phase I ESAs; five sites through Phase II ESAs; 10 building hazardous material surveys were completed; and 1 soil removal program was implemented. These activities were mainly related to the preparation required for sale of property or site decommissioning.
A Phase I Environmental Site Assessment is an assessment that identifies potential or existing environmental contamination liabilities. If required, a Phase II ESA may be conducted to further delineate the extent of contamination, where one would collect samples of soil and groundwater to analyze for quantitative values of various contaminants. The most frequent substances tested are petroleum hydrocarbons and heavy metals.
Internal Compliance Reviews
We regularly undertake internal compliance reviews to identify building-related environmental risks and to determine how compliant our facilities are with existing procedures and applicable regulations. These reviews are completed in accordance with our internal audit plan.
In 2012–2013, we reviewed our programs on topics including but not limited to fuel storage tanks, hazardous and non-hazardous waste (cell phone recycling), emergency response procedures (spill kits), and ongoing health, safety and environment inspections.
Training and Communication
In 2012–2013, training was provided to CBC/Radio-Canada employees and contractors on various environmental topics including:
- Canadian Environmental Assessment Act 2012 and checklist;
- Spill response, both general and specific to petroleum storage tanks;
- Fuel storage tanks;
- Asbestos, halocarbon and mould awareness;
- Storage tank awareness and storage tank environmental emergency response plan;
- PCBs and Transportation of dangerous goods.
Additional training is being explored for 2013–2014, including the introduction of an eco-friendly driving training program for all CBC/Radio-Canada drivers.