Apparently, it was three days before Newfoundland’s own natural resources minister, Shawn Skinner heard about the loss of about 26,000 litres of synthetic-based mud from drilling rig. In light of the lapse, Skinner says, a three-day delay to report an offshore spill is “unacceptable” and could suggest a need for a separate environmental regulator.

He said he learned about the incident aboard the Henry Goodrich rig when details were posted Thursday on the offshore regulator´s website. Skinner called it the second “significant communication breakdown” involving the Canada-Newfoundland and Labrador Offshore Petroleum Board since he became minister in early December.

Skinner has requested a meeting with the board, suggesting the regulator should inform the government of major incidents right away and reports should then be made public as soon as details are available.