Enbridge Inc.’s Fort McMurray to China 'Gateway Pipeline' Still a Go 

© 2010 Brad Kempo B.A. LL.B.

Barrister & Solicitor

It sure looks like Chinada ‘business as usual’ north of the 49th Parallel despite every attempt to impress upon Canada’s political and corporate leaders and Beijing that pursuing domestically and internationally unlawful policies and agendas attracts the most severe consequences. 


There will be no halting Chinada imperialism simply through persuasive and coercive diplomacy – of that the proof is absolutely certain. Back-channel efforts have been underway informally since early 2004 and formally since early 2006 with absolutely no success.  This undertaking has, however, delivered an enormous accomplishment in proving the existence and resiliency of totalitarian imperialism and using Canada as a secret base of operations for that unlawful initiative and tapping the country’s vast wealth to finance it.  


Evidence of ‘business as usual’ in Canada is observed in remarks made by the Conservative government during the March 25, 2010 Question Period about what was cancelled through quiet international pressure in July 2007  (read article).  The biggest transporter of Alberta crude to American markets, Enbridge Inc., persists in maintaining its totalitarian and Chinese triad loyalties by continuing to seek the construction of the $4 billion pipeline from Fort McMurray to the west coast. 



March 25, 2010  

Mr. Fin Donnelly (New Westminster—Coquitlam, NDP): 


Mr. Speaker, for almost 40 years the B.C. coast has been oil tanker free. However, that is now threatened by the Enbridge pipeline proposal that promises to bring tar sand crude from Alberta to B.C.'s coast for export. All it would take is one accident to inflict serious damage on the coastal ecosystem and the economy. The risk is not worth it. 


Will the government step away from this pipeline and reaffirm the moratorium on oil tanker traffic? 



Hon. Jim Prentice (Minister of the Environment, CPC):  


Mr. Speaker, this is an important Canadian project. We have put in place a high-calibre regulatory review that is commensurate with the importance of the project to ensure the environment is protected. 


I can advise my colleague that I, along with the chair of the National Energy Board, created a panel approximately a year ago that consists of three respected Canadians: Sheila Leggett, Hans Matthews, who is himself a member of a first nation, and Kenneth Bateman. Following public consultation, the terms of reference have been defined. They include consideration of all the marine safety issues the hon. member raises.  The government will continue to ensure a comprehensive regulatory review process. 



Mr. Fin Donnelly (New Westminster—Coquitlam, NDP): 


Mr. Speaker, this week a number of first nations, businesses and community organizations from across British Columbia came out against this pipeline proposal and the tanker traffic it would bring along. Yet the government is still working hand in glove with the Enbridge proposal to push this pipeline through. 


When asked, the people of British Columbia have said they do not want this pipeline. They do not want the oil tankers off their coast. 


Will the government stand with the people of British Columbia and say no to the Enbridge pipeline? 



Hon. Jim Prentice (Minister of the Environment, CPC):  


Mr. Speaker, it seems a little early for my hon. colleague to have decided on the merits of the project, given that no application has yet been filed. That is commensurate, I suppose, with that party's approach on matters like the budget. 


Nonetheless, we have appointed a review panel that consists of three of the most respected people in our country: Sheila Leggett, who is a sitting member of the National Energy Board, one of the most respected regulators in the country; Hans Matthews, a first nations citizen and an experienced geologist, as I recall; and Kenneth Bateman, a lawyer and also an experienced member of the National Energy Board. They will do a fine job of ensuring a comprehensive environmental review. 


March 26, 2010  

Mr. Fin Donnelly (New Westminster—Coquitlam, NDP)  


moved for leave to introduce Bill C-502, An Act to amend the Canada Shipping Act, 2001 (prohibition against oil tankers in Dixon Entrance, Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound). 


He said: Mr. Speaker, my bill would amend the Canada Shipping Act by prohibiting the transportation of oil in oil tankers along the north coast of British Columbia, specifically in Dixon Entrance, Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound. It would also allow the government, on the recommendation of Minister of Fisheries and Oceans, to designate other areas of the sea in which the transportation of oil by oil tankers could be prohibited. 


I feel the introduction of this bill is timely. On March 24, 1989, the Exxon Valdez oil tanker ran aground on Bligh Reef, causing one of the most devastating environmental disasters in North American history. The environmental impact of the Exxon Valdez spill was enormous, killing thousands of birds, sea mammals and others. 


This week first nations groups, businesses and other community activists from all across British Columbia came together to denounce the proposed Enbridge pipeline, which would bring 225 oil tankers a year through Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound to move crude oil to markets abroad. This traffic could endanger countless marine species, first nations and coastal communities. As lawmakers, I believe we have a duty to protect B.C.'s coastlines for generations to come. 


I strongly encourage the federal government to protect B.C.'s coast, our salmon fishery and our amazing coastal ecosystem and invest in a new renewable energy future. It can start to do this by voting for this bill.


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