MRO Magazine

Groups urge BC Premier to reject Kinder Morgan oil pipeline


October 6, 2016
By Rehana Begg

Vancouver – More than 30 groups across Canada today sent a letter to B.C. Premier Christy Clark urging the provincial government to reject the Kinder Morgan pipeline. An effective “world-leading” oil spill response system, which the province demanded, is not possible if the oil contains diluted bitumen.

The proposed Kinder Morgan Expansion pipeline, which would result in a six-fold increase in tankers carrying bitumen through the Salish Sea around Vancouver Harbour, is widely expected to receive federal approval.

“Premier Clark has laid out her five conditions for the Kinder Morgan pipeline, but continues to ignore the highly credible peer-reviewed science that shows there is no spill response technology in existence that can clean up sunken diluted bitumen,” said Christianne Wilhelmson, Executive Director of the Georgia Strait Alliance. “We are calling on Premier Clark to reject the pipeline on the basis her spill conditions cannot be met.”

As the letter states: The Salish Sea is more than a body of water. It is what defines much of Vancouver, Vancouver Island and the Gulf Islands. From the iconic beauty of Kits Beach and Stanley Park, to the commercial fisheries and tourism businesses that employ thousands, to recreational fisheries and outdoor activity that defines our communities and our livelihoods— the Salish Sea is a cherished presence in the lives of anyone who lives or visits the southern coast.


“From coast to coast, a growing number of Canadians reject the risks tar sands pipelines pose to coastal communities and our drinking water,” said Patrick DeRochie, Climate and Energy Program Manager at Environmental Defence. “Just like we’ve called on elected officials to protect the Great Lakes, the St. Lawrence River and the Bay of Fundy, we’re urging Premier Clark to protect Vancouver’s waters from bitumen spills.”

The letter cites the 2016 study by the National Academy of Science (NAS) – the scientific advisor to the United States Congress and President – that examined the entire field of existing studies on the environmental fate of dilbit (including a government of Canada 2013 report). It concluded that dilbit can and will sink when spilled in water, increasing the impacts associated with a spill.

“Twenty one BC municipalities, 17 First Nations, environmental groups and citizens across the country are opposed to Kinder Morgan because the science clearly shows the oil spill risk is too great and the impacts too catastrophic,” said Sven Biggs, energy campaigner at Stand. “We urge Premier Clark to listen to the science and stand up to those, including Prime Minister Trudeau, who want to see Kinder Morgan built.”

Meanwhile, British Columbia’s multi-billion tourism industry would be directly vulnerable.

“Approving Kinder Morgan with its massive increase in tanker traffic would put thousands of tourism jobs at risk,” said Randy Burke, Director of Bluewater Adventures. “Any oil spill will receive massive international media attention and literally ‘tar’ the reputation of this precious coast for years to come.”

Source: Environmental Defence

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2 Comments » for Groups urge BC Premier to reject Kinder Morgan oil pipeline
  1. Randy says:

    Let’s be cautious about who is directly involved in blocking Canadian oil. Of all those writing to the premier I suspect none are truly Canadian entities. Taking funding from foreign governments and foreign lobby groups should automatically disqualify environmental groups from presenting dissent to Canadian projects. None would be acting in Canadian interest and therefore their arguments have no basis in our society. It’s time Canadians stood up and demanded that foreign interference in Canadian infrastructure or in this case Canadian oil should butt out. None are attacking Cartel oil who by the way are the least interested in the environment or societies human rights. Nor will any of these groups demand the same from the worlds despotic dictators. Until these groups begin attacking the other hand that feeds them there should be nothing heard from these environmental terrorist groups.

  2. Ronald says:

    While its OK for foreign companies to spend millions on advertising campaigns, and to build and own Companies that are extracting bitumen, its not OK for money to come from outside Canada to fight these projects. How hypocritical. The hand that feeds us also includes huge government subsidies to oil. We need some oil but not to the extend it’s being developed. Who are the real terrorist, try opposing big oil.
    You are the one who nothing should be heard from, what ridiculous reasoning.

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