Earth Day Statement on Protecting Our Coast

April 22, 2013 | Statements

People know that the NDP has taken a clear position on the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline. We believe it is not in the economic or environmental interests of British Columbia.

We also believe the Liberal government made a mistake by signing over decision-making authority to the Harper government in Ottawa. It is not acceptable that the Harper government’s decision on Enbridge has become the decision of the people of BC.

That’s why in the first week of an NDP government, we will take back that decision making authority. We believe that that is the appropriate approach—that a decision that has so much impact on the economy and environment of British Columbia should be made here in BC.

Of course, the Enbridge pipeline isn’t the only pipeline proposal BC faces. Kinder Morgan has a proposal currently in the pre-application stage. Kinder Morgan has an existing pipeline, which has been used largely to serve the west coast market, including the Chevron refinery in Metro Vancouver and other refineries such as Cherry Point in Washington State. Only about 80,000 barrels per day of the current pipeline is exported via tanker from Vancouver.

The Kinder Morgan proposal as we understand it, would dramatically transform what that pipeline does and would dramatically transform the Port of Vancouver. The Kinder Morgan pipeline would become a pipeline designed for oil sands bitumen export, with increasing dramatically the barrels per day passing through the Port of Vancouver via tankers.

We have to wait to see a formal application, but I don’t think that the Port of Metro Vancouver, as busy and as successful as it is, should become a major oil export facility.

We will conduct a made-in-BC review of the Kinder Morgan proposal and decisions will be made here in BC.

Our position is clear: we do not believe any proposal should transform Vancouver into a major port for oil export.

In this election, more of the same means Stephen Harper decides what’s right for BC. Change for the better means a made-in-BC approach to protecting our environment and our coasts.