If that happens, it would be the third time in a year Canada has stopped North American Free Trade Agreement scrutiny of its environmental record.
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Evidence suggest the ponds are seeping into the nearby ground and water.
'Through a council resolution in December 2014, Canada, Mexico and the U.S. unanimously voted to terminate the submission'— Danny Kingsberry, Environment Canada spokesmanTwo environmental groups and three private citizens from Alberta, Saskatchewan and the N.W.T. want the Commission on Environmental Co-operation to find out whether Canada is breaking its own Federal Fisheries Act by failing to prevent tailings from leaking into the Athabasca River and nearby creeks in northern Alberta.
"It was important for us know whether this was happening and whether environmental laws were being broken and whether the government is upholding those laws or ignoring them," said Dale Marshall of Environmental Defence, one of the groups that launched the complaint in 2010.