Green politicians voice opposition to Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion
Representatives of federal, provincial and municipal Green parties voiced their collective opposition today (September 12) to plans to twin the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline between Edmonton and Burnaby.
“This proposal would dramatically increase the number of super tankers carrying bitumen diluent—it would expand the size of tankers leaving the port of Vancouver and we would end up with as many as 300 to 360 super tankers a year, trying to get out through the Second Narrows Bridge, under the railway bridge, and under Lion’s Gate Bridge,” said Elizabeth May, the MP for Saanich-Gulf Islands and Leader of the Green Party of Canada, at a news conference in downtown Vancouver.
“These are areas with significant tidal influences," she added. "The precision of movement of these super tankers would have to be 100 percent perfect every day of the year for us to avoid a serious accident that could foul our waterways, our beaches and our shorelines from the Lower Mainland to the Gulf Islands."
Kinder Morgan’s proposed $4.1-billion pipeline twinning project could see its capacity increased to 850,000 barrels per day from 300,000.
Jane Sterk, the leader of the Green Party of B.C., argued there is a “great possibility that this will be passed by stealth”.
She noted she expects the Kinder Morgan pipeline to play “a very big role” in the provincial election next spring.
Green city councillor Adriane Carr urged the NDP and Liberals to rethink their position and what she called their "waffling stand” and speak out in opposition to Kinder Morgan’s proposed expansion.
Carr added that Vancouver cannot be “the greenest city and the export port for bitumen from the tarsands”.
“I grew up playing on the beaches of Stanley Park, and I cannot bear the thought of those beaches being fouled by this tarry bitumen,” she said.
Mayor Gregor Robertson has previously stated his opposition to the proposed pipeline expansion. The governing Vision Vancouver party has been gathering signatures on an online petition against the expansion of tanker traffic in the city.
Kinder Morgan is expected to make its application for the expansion in late 2013.