B.C. rejects Northern Gateway tar sands pipeline

The British Columbia government has rejected the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline, which plans to ship Alberta mined bitumen to the West Coast for shipping to Asian markets, over environmental concerns.

APTN National News
VICTORIA–The British Columbia government has rejected the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline, which plans to ship Alberta mined bitumen to the West Coast for shipping to Asian markets, over environmental concerns.

In its final written submission to joint review panel studying the project, the provincial government said it could not accept Enbridge’s project as presented because it failed to address persistent environmental concerns.

“British Columbia thoroughly reviewed all the evidence and submissions made to the panel and asked substantive questions about the project including its route, spill response capacity and financial structure to handle any incidents,” said Environment Minister Terry Lake, in a statement. “Our questions were not satisfactorily answered during these hearings.”

Lake said the Northern Gateway Pipeline Joint Review Panel needed to “determine if it is appropriate to grant a certificate for the project as currently proposed on the basis of a promise to do more study and planning.” Lake said the outstanding questions should be answered before the project gets a green light from the panel.

The B.C. government says the project needed a “world-leading marine oil spill response,” along with similar land oil spill prevention measures, settlement of Aboriginal and treaty rights issues along with the province getting a “fair share” of the economic benefits that reflect its risks from having the majority of the pipeline crossing its territory.

Lake said Enbridge failed to provide “little evidence” it could initiate adequate spill response in the event of a pipeline rupture.

“Our government cannot support the issuance of a certificate for the pipeline as it was presented,” said Lake.

Enbridge, however, didn’t interpret the B.C. government’s position as a rejection, but rather an affirmation it would support the project if its conditions are met.

Janet Holder, executive vice-president for western access, said the project’s proponent would meet the conditions by the end fo the panel’s review.

“We are working hard to meet the conditions of the government and the people of B.C.,” said Holder, in a statement.

The province will be providing their oral arguments to the panel on June 17 during a hearing in Terrace, B.C.

[email protected]

Online Producer / Ottawa

Before moving to become the APTN News social media producer, Mark was the executive producer for the news in eastern Canada. Before starting with APTN in 2009, Mark worked at CBC Radio and Television in Newfoundland and Labrador and Ottawa.

1 thought on “B.C. rejects Northern Gateway tar sands pipeline

Comments are closed.