Cdn Feds Show Bias Before Hearings on the Destruction of the Great Bear Rain Forest
By B. McPherson
Hearings are scheduled to start in Kitimat, BC, to hear the public speak about their interest in the proposed Enbridge Gateway Pipeline that is proposed to dig its way through the Great Bear Rain Forest to bring crude oil from the Alberta oil sands to the BC coast at the end of Douglas Channel.
The Calgary based company has proposed the construction of twin pipelines that would snake from outside of Edmonton to the village of Kitimat. One pipeline would carry crude oil west while the second pipeline would carry the solvent needed to make the crude flow, east for reuse.
Enbridge is the same company that has its megaproject in the US stalled, the Keystone Pipeline.
The proposed route through British Columbia is a poor choice because it targets the untouched temperate rain forest, it ends at the head of a tortuous fiord, and many of the native land claims involving this land have yet to be settled.
Prime Minister Harper has stated that a pipeline to the west coast is necessary in order to sell oil to the Asian markets. With the stalling of the Keystone project he has stated that the market needs to diversify. Monday, in a shot across the bows, Natural Resources Minister Joe Oliver lumped opponents of the pipelines with radicals and other foreign special interest groups.
“Oliver says the groups "threaten to hijack our regulatory system to achieve their radical ideological agenda," stack the hearings with people to delay or kill "good projects," attract "jet-setting" celebrities and use funding from "foreign special interest groups."” CBC
Over 4 000 people have registered to speak at the hearings. According to the rules, those deeming the issue of import to them have the right to speak. Oliver is now speaking of changing the rules. He spoke on the Monday CBC news about jobs, about global markets and various riches expected, but failed to mention the environmental impact of a double pipeline buried through rare temperate rain forest. The swath would have to remain clear of regrowth and access roads would have to be cut in order to maintain or repair leaks.
Respected environmentalist David Suzuki speaking during an interview on the CBC is quoted:
"We have become so powerful and demanding that we are negatively impacting air, water, soil and biodiversity, the very source of our lives and livelihood," the scientist and broadcaster said. "That's what environmentalists are concerned about and the minister's diatribe prevents us from having this important discussion of values and balance." David Suzuki
Minister Oliver also condemned the influx of “foreign money” into Canada to support environmental groups. The Alberta Oil Sands project is heavily financed by foreign owned companies.
Some of the players in the oil sands:
Shell Oil – owned by Dutch interests
Total – owned by French interests
Sinopec – owned by Chinese interests
Statoil ASA – owned by Norwegian interests
Nexen – owned by US interests
Imperial Oil – owned by US interestsRef: Wikipedia