Former New Brunswick Liberal leader Bernard Richard has been hired to conduct an environmental assessment of a controversial oil exploration project in the Gulf of St. Lawrence. The Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board has asked Richard to head a review of Corridor Resources Inc.’s planned exploratory drill project on its Old Harry site, an underwater area near the Iles-de-la-Madeleine. The independent review will focus solely on the possible environmental impacts of drilling an exploratory well into Old Harry, the first-ever drill program in the gulf. The review will include public consultations in all five provinces whose shores border the Gulf of St. Lawrence. “I said ‘I know absolutely nothing about offshore drilling,'” Richard said. “His response was ‘perfect.’?” Richard became interim leader of the provincial Liberals in 2001, stepping down in 2002.