Thousands sign B.C. NDP letter against Northern Gateway oil pipeline
The provincial New Democrats have gathered more than 25,000 names on a letter formally opposing Enbridge’s plan to build an oil pipeline from northern Alberta to the B.C. coast.
The NDP letter highlights concerns about the risks posed to the environment, wildlife, First Nations communities, and the economy from the proposed Northern Gateway project. The open letter, dated April 30 and posted online, is addressed to the federal Joint Review Panel, which has been holding hearings on the Enbridge proposal.
Enbridge, a Calgary-based energy company, wants to build a 1,170-kilometre-long pipeline between the Edmonton area and B.C.’s coast at Kitimat, where tankers would ship the oil to markets in Asia.
The Opposition NDP has expressed fears about the consequences of a potential oil tanker spill along the coast or a potential leak from the pipeline where it crosses B.C. wilderness. The NDP also raised concerns the project will contribute to climate change while providing little economic benefit to B.C.
“We strongly believe that the NGP [Northern Gateway project] is not in the public interest and will cause significant adverse environmental effects,” reads the letter, signed by NDP leader Adrian Dix and the party caucus.
Meanwhile, B.C. Liberal premier Christy Clark has not taken a public stand for or against the proposed pipeline. However, Clark has told media to expect more details about the government’s position in the coming days.