Raincoast Conservation Foundation is excited to present the documentary film, Reflections: Art for an Oil-Free Coast, which shares the story of an expedition of artists into the truly stunning and remote landscape of British Columbia's Great Bear Rainforest, weaving together the artists' work and their emotional response to a region and people at risk.
Fifty years ago there were an estimated 5,000 Nechako white sturgeon -- today there are just 350 struggling to hang on. Dams and habitat loss have taken their toll, but the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline could be the coup de grace for this critically imperilled creature. The proposed pipeline would cross the watercourse in which the sturgeon lives. But it doesn't stop there.
The Geological Survey of Canada has identified a tsunami hazard and a possible seismic fault in Douglas Channel near Kitimat. That's the proposed site of the Enbridge Northern Gateway project and at least three liquified natural gas projects. If the projects go ahead, hundreds of supertankers with either bitumen or LNG will be sailing in the channel for years to come.
This fall, hundreds of youth will come together in Ottawa for a weekend of education, training, networking and more to empower our generation to build the movement we need for a just and sustainable future. Called PowerShift, this is both a gathering but also a call for what Canada desperately needs. We need to shift the way we power our society and give people the power to build the future they want. Don't believe me? Here are 10 reasons Canada is in desperate need of a PowerShift.
Can I call you Ian? I hope so. Let's consider it a first step towards building that trust and confidence you seek with British Columbians. I read your recent op-ed in the Vancouver Sun and I had some follow-up questions and comments.
Alberta and Ontario are, from an outsider's perspective, remarkably similar. Their residents sing the same anthem, they drink the same double-double's and a vast number of people in both places live vicariously through the local hockey team. But in one key aspect Ontario is practically another world. It has embraced renewable energy like nowhere else in North America.
We don't have to risk the destruction of one of the world's most spectacular environments to get full value from our oil sands resource. Of course, we have to put refineries in environments that can best handle them and not in areas that can't. The recent proposal to build a refinery in Kitimat is an example of building one in the wrong place. That's why I'm saying no to the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline and yes to a more sustainable future for the Great Bear region.
You don't hear this stated much these days: The B.C. Liberals will win in 2013. You heard it here first. In one of the great resurrections in B.C. political history, on the evening of May 14, 2013 premier-elect Christy Clark will be grinning from ear to ear in front of a packed room of supporters in downtown Vancouver. She will thank her NDP opponent for running a spirited campaign, and graciously thank the voters of British Columbia for giving her a new four-year mandate.
There's one question about the Enbridge Northern Gateway project that many people ask and few can answer: Who is responsible for the port of Kitimat? Who would be liable should there be a disaster in the port? Nobody really knows. Most of the other harbours in Canada are the responsibility of Ports Canada, a branch of Transport Canada or run by (usually not-for-profit) semi-public port corporations or local harbour commissions. Yet Kitimat has one of the few private ports in Canada. To find out why, watch the multiple Oscar-winning movie On the Waterfront, starring Marlon Brando, about how the mob ran the New York docks.
Mitt Romney, the Republican candidate for president of the United States issued his "white paper" on energy policy on Thursday. It calls for an integrated energy market with Canada, the United States and Mexico. Romney also endorses Prime Minister Stephen Harper's environmental fast track "one project, one review" policy.
For all those who in Alberta that keep saying that the people of British Columbia have to be "educated" about pipelines, and just so Stephen Harper is up to date on his science: Building a pipeline over smashed, broken, uplifted, twisted Jurassic-era islands, downsized by erosion, lost islands turned into mountains, buried and shaped by kilometres of glacial ice, is a completely different story altogether.
If there is one thing that can be said about all the attention directed to Enbridge's Northern Gateway Project, it is that it's provided ample distraction for other projects and issues to move along without getting the same ass-kicking Enbridge is. Take for example, the Pacific Trails Pipeline project ( also referred to as the KSL line). With minimal media coverage during the approval process, it has by and large flown completely under the radar of most British Columbians. That's a damn shame in my opinion, and I'm going to tell you why.
The Northern Gateway is now becoming the National Nightmare. Canada has a new Two Solitudes in the 21st century. The dividing line is not the Ottawa River but the Rockies. It appears that in Alberta -- not just columnists but bloggers and tweeters as well -- seem to believe that if they just yell loud enough, that the people of B.C. will eventually realize their thought errors and join in supporting Alberta's manifest destiny.
So why do people insist, despite the evidence, that the Northern Gateway go to Prince Rupert? It's no longer a pipeline; it's emotion and ideology. Ideology in that opposition to the Northern Gateway is seen by conservatives as heretical opposition to free enterprise itself. Emotion among those who see promoting the oil patch as an issue of "Alberta pride" and even Canadian patriotism. For the promoters of the pipeline to Prince Rupert, ignoring the science of geology and the study of geography across all of northwestern B.C. is no different than repeatedly knocking your head against the Paleozoic metamorphic greenstone of the mountain cliffs along the Skeena. It only gives you a headache.
Yesterday in British Columbia, Prime Minister Stephen Harper tried to sound a note of reason on the subject of the increasingly unpopular proposal to build 1,100 kilometres of Northern Gateway pipeline. And he talked about basing these decisions on science. My favourite bit, if I am allowed favourite bits of whoppers, was the gratuitous, "As I've said repeatedly." Where and when did he ever say anything like this before? Let's look at what he actually has said repeatedly...
B.C.'s premier Christy Clark was right to walk away from a national energy strategy promoted by Alberta's Alison Redford at a provincial premiers' meeting in Halifax in late July. She just did it for the wrong reasons. Clark should have renounced the proposal because it's focused more on tar sands, pipelines, and markets than on getting Canada's greenhouse gas emissions under control.