Many British Columbians are up in arms over the threats oil expansion and oil transportation are posing to our communities. The devastation that oil production and transportation can cause has became all too clear in April 2010 with the infamous Deepwater Horizon offshore oil rig explosion.
Where do we sit in terms of oil exploration and transportation in BC? What is the history behind this issue and where do we currently stand? Read SPEC's article A History Of Oil Off Our Coast.
Of most pressing concern at the moment for our province is the proposal currently before the Canadian government and undergoing public and environmental review is Alberta-based company Enbridge's proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline and associated tanker traffic.
The proposal is, briefly, to build a twined pipeline from Alberta's Tar sands in the East west across northern British Columbia, ending in Kitimat, BC. One pipeline would carry at least 525,000 barrels of crude oil to the coast for shipment in massive supertankers down BC's rugged and priceless coastline and then out to primarily Asian markets. The second pipeline would carry 193,000 barrels of toxic condensate to the tar sands. Condensate must be mixed with crude bitumen for transport in pipelines.
The second threat is the proposed twinning of the Kinder-Morgan Pipeline, which currently brings oil from Alberta to a refinery in Burnaby before shipping overseas by tanker. For more, see the article below.
While SPEC receives exactly $0 in funding, whether local or foreign for advocacy on this issue, we are spreading information to the best of our ability because we believe that without strong opposition from citizens it could become a reality and lead to an environmental travesty. Pending threats include not only a spill off our coast but a big step in the wrong direction for our climate and our globe.
Below you will find some of the media that SPEC has amassed and shared on this issue.
"Kinder Morgan to proceed with $5-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion to Burnaby" By Gordon Hamilton and Brian Morton
"Pipeline itself not the only problem we should worry about" by Mark Jaccard
spOIL - a beautiful film by PacificWild.org focusing on what we have to lose.
BC's Huge Gamble - a 10 minute short on the issue.
The Enbridge pipeline proposal is currently in the public and government review. The National Energy Board Joint Review Panel is currently hearing from the over 4,000 people who signed up to speak their opinion on the proposal. A SPEC director and a SPEC staff are among those who signed up independently to speak at these hearings.
While the speakers list is now closed you can still voice your opinion by composing a written submission. These must be received by August 31st, 2012.
View more information on the National Energy Board Joint Review Panel Website.