Tuesday, July 27, 2010

First nations band together — to say no to Enbridge pipeline (BP Again)

First nations band together — to say no to Enbridge pipeline

By Fiona Anderson, Vancouver Sun March 23, 2010

(Another fine BP project as you will see at the end. Dave)

Read more: http://www.vancouversun.com/technology/first+nations+oppose+Enbridge+pipeline+Kitimat/2716959/story.html#ixzz0ux0v9dNg

B.C. First Nations announced their opposition to a proposed crude oil pipeline that would run across British Columbia - in Vancouver, March 23, 2010. Art Sterritt, exeuctive director of the Coastal First Nations, shows the pipeline from Alberta through B.C. (in orange line)
Photograph by: Bill Keay , PNG

First nations from British Columbia and Alberta and environmentalists came out in force Tuesday to voice their opposition to Enbridge’s proposed 1,170-kilometre pipeline, which would carry crude from the oilsands in Alberta to a port in Kitimat, where it would be transferred to tankers.

The day chosen was significant, the 21st anniversary of the Exxon Valdez running aground in Alaska, spilling 40 million litres of crude oil into Prince William Sound and causing widespread damage.

The risk of an oil tanker running aground as it travels “through the pristine waters within our traditional territories,” is too great, said Art Sterritt, executive director of Coastal First Nations, an alliance of native bands along British Columbia’s north and central coast, including the Haida.

“If we had a tanker accident on the coast of British Columbia it would literally wipe [out] all of our cultures, all of our salmon, all of our groundfish,” Sterritt said. “We cannot let that happen.”

A five-year study released earlier this week by Raincoast Conservation Foundation concluded that whales, wolves, bears and birds would be devastated by an oil spill in the area.

The Coastal First Nations met with Enbridge almost a year ago to tell them they were opposed to the project.

“At that time they told us — and they said this at their [annual general meeting] as well — that if all of the communities within this geographic region didn’t support the pipeline they would stop the project,” Sterritt said.

So the group met with the communities in the area to determine who supported the project and who didn’t. What they found was that all of the communities were opposed to the pipeline.

From Vancouver Island up to Haida Gwaii, through the Interior to the territories of the Gitanyow and the Carrier Sekani and down again to Lillooet, “all those nations and first nations have expressed their opposition to the Enbridge project,” Sterritt said.

“We all believe the Enbridge gateway pipeline project is a threat to the very existence of our culture and our way of life,” he said.

The announcement accompanied a full-page advertisement in a national newspaper listing those opposed to the pipeline, including first nations, environmental organizations, businesses and individuals including David Suzuki and Margaret Atwood.

The Union of BC Indian Chiefs, which represents about 40 per cent of aboriginals throughout the province, passed its own resolution on Tuesday unanimously opposing the project. A representative from the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation in Alberta spoke out against the project, and other Alberta natives attended to show their support. So too did environmentalist Vicky Husband, who has received both the Order of British Columbia and the Order of Canada.

Husband called the coming together of so many groups a historic moment for Canada.

“Canada’s conservation community is unanimous in its opposition to the pipeline and to any tanker traffic on our coast,” Husband said.

“And why are we here to shift dirty tarsands oil to China or to India?” she asked. “So we can expand more tarsands, so we can export more climate change and destroy more of our Earth? We have to change our course now.”

The group is hoping by banding together they will persuade the provincial government to stop the project.

But while Premier Gordon Campbell told reporters in Victoria that the project would be reviewed, he noted the number of jobs that would be created if the project went ahead. According to its website, Enbridge estimates that 4,000 people would be needed to build the pipeline.

“There’s literally hundreds and hundreds of jobs that will be available to first nations people across the northern part of our province,” Campbell said. “I think our job is to try and find ways we can to get first nations people engaged with paycheques, building the kind of economic future that they need in a way that meets all of our environmental standards, which are the most rigorous anywhere in the world.”

Enbridge has not yet submitted an application for environmental approval of the pipeline, though it said it expected to do so in the coming weeks. It then hopes to start construction in 2012 and have the project complete by 2015 or 2016.

Enbridge refused an interview “this close to the filing” of its application. But it did say in an e-mail that it “welcomes and encourages public input” on the project.


with files from Jonathan Fowlie


UPDATE 2-Pipe break hits U.S., Canada refineries
Mon Jul 26, 2010 8:19pm EDT
* Line serves Michigan, Ohio, Ontario refineries

* Enbridge hopes to restart by Wednesday.

* Spill cleanup underway

(Adds refineries potentially affected; Enbridge hopes to restart by Wednesday)

HOUSTON, July 26 (Reuters) - An oil pipeline break in Michigan on Monday shut part of a system carrying Canadian crude oil to the U.S. Midwest and southern Canada, Enbridge Energy Partners (EEP.N) said.

No one was hurt, but about 19,500 barrels of oil was released into a creek that then carried the oil into the Kalamazoo River, an Enbridge news release said. Crews with skimming equipment were responding.

Enbridge hoped to have the line repaired and restarted by Wednesday, a spokesman said.

The break was east of Chicago and did not affect the big refineries in that area, but plants in Detroit, Michigan; Toledo, Lima and Canton, Ohio; and Sarnia and Nanticoke, Ontario were downstream from the break, industry sources said.

On the U.S. side, Marathon (MRO.N), Sunoco (SUN.N), BP (BP.L) and Husky (HSE.TO) did not respond to inquiries about their refineries. Marathon has refineries in Detroit and Canton, Ohio; Sunoco and BP have refineries in Toledo, and Husky has one in Lima.

On the Canadian side, officials of Imperial (IMO.TO), Shell (RDSa.L) and Suncor (SU.TO) could not say how their refineries in Ontario would be affected. The area is served by another Enbridge pipeline.

Enbridge said the break is near Marshall, Michigan, in the Lakehead System's Line 6B, a 30-inch, 190,000 barrel per day line carrying light synthetic, heavy and medium crude oil from Griffith, Indiana to Sarnia, Ontario.

The cause of the release was under investigation. (Reporting by Bruce Nichols, additional reporting by Erwin Seba in Houston and Jeff Jones in Calgary; Editing by Phil Berlowitz)


Enbridge, BP plan pipes to get Canada oil to US Gulf Coast
31 Aug 2008, 0450 hrs IST,REUTERS
CALGARY: Enbridge Inc and BP Plc plan to spend up to $2 bn expanding their pipeline systems to ship growing volumes of Canadian crude oil to the US Gulf Coast, they said on Friday.

Enbridge, best known as operator of the main artery for Canadian oil exports, and BP, the British oil major, said they aim to develop a system to ship 250,000 barrels of oil a day to Texas City, Texas, from Flanagan, Illinois, by 2012.

The project, which could cost $1-2 billion, would entail building new pipelines as well as using some already in service. It is the latest in a long list of proposals aimed at getting more crude derived from Canada’s oil sands to the largest concentration of refineries in the US. The plants, in Texas and Louisiana, have been hit with declining volumes of oil from Mexico and Venezuela.

For Enbridge, the new initiative would coincide with plans to get Western Canadian oil to the Gulf Coast by reversing the flow of two lines, allowing access to the Atlantic Seaboard. From there, it could be shipped to the Gulf by tanker. That 200,000 barrel a day plan, called Trailbreaker, would cost C$350 mn ($330 mn) and be in service in 2010. The two projects do not negate a bigger proposal Enbridge has floated called Texas Access, but they do bridge the gap before that 400,000 barrel a day line can be in service, Enbridge vice-president Steve Wuori said.

Earlier this year, Enbridge pushed back by a year or two the startup of Texas Access, which would run from Patoka, Illinois, after several oil sands producers delayed projects, blaming increased regulatory scrutiny and surging costs. “This is part of the phased approach that we’ve really been working hard with to get the barrels to the Gulf Coast according to the needs that are coming out of the oil sands,” Wuori said.

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