Crowner’s quest law

Robert White: Here lies the the tailings pond; good: here stands the duck; good; if the duck go to this tailings pond, and drown himself, it is, will he, nill he, he goes, –mark you that; but if the tailings pond come to him and drown him . . .

Syncrude has said the tailings ponds never came in contact with the ducks. Instead, the company says the ducks came into contact with the tailings ponds, which are legal and licenced by the province.

“I do not accept the interpretation that so long as the animal comes into contact with the substance it contaminates itself,” said Justice Ken Tjosvold.

The judge went on to add, “I find there is sufficient evidence that a harmful substance was present in the area migratory birds would frequent.”

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