Robin Rowland
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Robin Rowland is an indepedent reporter, author and visual journalist based in Kitimat, British Columbia, where he publishes the Northwest Coast Energy News blog, covering energy, environment and science issues in northwestern British Columbia, as well as writing the occasional Tao of News blog on the future of journalism.

Robin Rowland grew up in Kitimat but left as a teenager when his family moved to Toronto. In 2010, after a 35-year career in journalism at the Sudbury Star, CTV News and CBC News and as a freelancer, he took early retirement from his job as CBC News photo editor and returned to his home town. From 1995-2001, Rowland taught computer assisted and investigative reporting at the Ryerson University School of Journalism.

He is the author or co-author of five books, including two histories of Prohibiton-era Canada, King of the Mob and Undercover. In 1995, he co-wrote the first book on how to do research on the Internet. His latest book, A River Kwai Story, the Sonkrai Tribunal,is an account of the war crimes trial of the Japanese and Korean guards charged over their actions in one of the worst POW camps on the Burma Thailand Railway.

When not covering pipeline and energy issues in northwest BC, Rowland spend his time photographing the spectacular natural beauty of northwest BC.

You can follow Robin Rowland on Twitter at @rowlandr and Northwest Coast Energy News at @nwcstenergynews.

Entries by Robin Rowland

Marmite Kept My Father Alive, Now It's Being Banned

(1) Comments | Posted January 24, 2014 | 11:00 PM

When I was a little kid my father insisted -- yes insisted -- that I eat my Marmite.

This morning I woke up to the news that the Canadian Food Inspection Agency has apparently banned Marmite, a yeast extract spread, in this country, along with some other British "comfort foods."

...
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Keystone XL Pipeline Report Studied B.C. Scenarios

(0) Comments | Posted March 13, 2013 | 7:19 PM

The U.S. State Department released its long-awaited report on the Keystone XL project last week. Most media focused on the executive summary, but several scenarios in British Columbia are outlined in the full report even though the province is thousands of kilometres removed from the proposed pipeline.

There...

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Tsunami Warning Text Messages Fail To Provide Any Info

(1) Comments | Posted March 12, 2013 | 1:25 AM

For the past month, text message tsunami warnings from the West Coast and Alaska Tsunami Warning Center (WCATWC) have transformed from clear, concise vital information to incomprehensible computer code with a link to a useless URL -- at least on my Bell Android Samsung phone.

Take the warning for...

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B.C. Haida Gwaii Earthquake Preps Stalled By Feds, Says B.C. MP

(3) Comments | Posted March 2, 2013 | 11:41 PM

The Stephen Harper government is stalling on requests for better earthquake preparation on B.C.'s Haida Gwaii, according to NDP MP for Skeena-Bulkley Valley, Nathan Cullen.

Speaking to northwest reporters on Thursday, Cullen, who is NDP House Leader, said: "The government has been stalling since November when we've been asking them...

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Pine Beetles' Move Up Threatens Western Forests: Study

(6) Comments | Posted January 2, 2013 | 12:04 AM

With temperatures climbing from climate change, the mountain pine beetle is now moving to higher elevations on mountain slopes and is a "rising threat" to the whitebark pine, which is found mainly in the Rocky Mountains, coast range of B.C. and the northern U.S., says a new study.

The report...

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Protecting Canada's Lakes, Rivers: 2012 Media Fail

(5) Comments | Posted December 26, 2012 | 5:04 PM

The most blatant fail by the Canadian media in 2012 was the fact news coverage all but ignored the gutting of the Navigable Waters Protection Act by the Conservative government in its latest anti-democratic omnibus bill.

There are crucial current issues (not to mention well-founded historical and contemporary grievances) that...

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B.C. Tries To Examine Earthquake, Tsunami Response As 'Learning Opportunity'

(1) Comments | Posted November 12, 2012 | 9:46 PM

The British Columbia Solicitor General's Department is asking northwest municipalities to "clarify the initial response actions" to the magnitude 7.7 earthquake off Haida Gwaii on Oct. 27, and the resulting tsunami warning.

The package includes a letter sent to emergency program co-ordinators across British Columbia, adding: "Input will...

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How B.C. Zoned Out On The Tsunami Warning

(0) Comments | Posted November 7, 2012 | 10:18 PM

Kitimat, B.C. and New York had one thing in common this week: the misuse and use of social media, Twitter and Facebook that spread both accurate warnings and dangerous misinformation about an impending disaster. In the case of New York and the surrounding area, it was Superstorm Sandy that caused...

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Lessons From The Quake: Kitimat Needs Better Emergency Communications Than Faxes

(0) Comments | Posted October 29, 2012 | 1:15 PM

As a 7.7 magnitude earthquake hit off Haida Gwaii shortly after 8 p.m. Saturday, I was at the Haisla Recreation Centre as the Haisla Nation marked the return of the G'ps Golox totem pole.

Like a boat being lifted by gentle waves, the Rec Centre began to...

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TransCanada Plans Natural Gas Pipeline Over Rugged Mountain Route To Kitimat

(1) Comments | Posted October 19, 2012 | 1:23 PM

TransCanada plans a rugged over-mountain route for its proposed Coastal Gaslink pipeline to the Shell Canada liquified natural gas project in Kitimat, B.C., company officials said this week in two presentations.

The proposal was presented Monday to the District of Kitimat Council and then at a community town hall briefing.

...
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Tsunami Hazard, Possible Fault Line Discovered Near Kitimat

(1) Comments | Posted September 21, 2012 | 3:05 AM

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...

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'On the Waterfront' Could Decide Fate Of Enbridge's Kitimat Terminal

(3) Comments | Posted September 3, 2012 | 1:30 AM

This is part two of a two-part series: Kitimat On The Waterfront

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...

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Water, Not Oil, Is Hot Summer Issue In Kitimat

(0) Comments | Posted August 29, 2012 | 9:36 AM

This is part one of a two-part series: Kitimat On The Waterfront

Even with David Black's proposal for an oil refinery on a hill 25 kilometres north of Kitimat, residents here know that the Enbridge Northern Gateway debate has gone on for years and will go on for...

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Romney Endorses Harper's Environmental Fast Track -- If Oil Goes To The U.S.

(2) Comments | Posted August 23, 2012 | 7:06 PM

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.

The...

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Stephen Harper vs. Science

(8) Comments | Posted August 21, 2012 | 4:21 PM

Prime Minister Stephen Harper has declared that science, not politics, will decide the fate of the Northern Gateway project .

Harper's statement left many in Canada scratching their heads, given his government's well known antipathy to any scientific finding that conflicts with its ideological blinders.

A

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Enbridge's Northern Gateway Becoming The National Nightmare

(5) Comments | Posted August 20, 2012 | 12:35 PM

This is part three of a three-part series titled "Pipelines, Politics and Pundits: The view from Northwest B.C."

For the past couple of years, Enbridge and its supporters have been promoting the Northern Gateway Pipeline project as a new "National Dream" bringing Canada together....

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Get Over it! A Pipeline to Prince Rupert Is Bust

(1) Comments | Posted August 17, 2012 | 1:43 PM

This is part two of a three-part series titled "Pipelines, Politics and Pundits: The view from Northwest B.C."

There's a new subclause in Murphy's Law in Canada these days. The more evidence against sending the Northern Gateway Pipeline to Prince Rupert, the more politicians, journalists, bloggers and tweeters...

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Pipelines, Politics and Pundits: How the Media Got Christy Clark All Wrong

(4) Comments | Posted August 16, 2012 | 8:03 AM

This is part one of a three-part series titled "Pipelines, Politics and Pundits: The view from Northwest B.C."

When B.C. Premier Christy Clark outlined her five conditions last month for possibly approving the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, her demand for a "fair share" of Alberta's petro-royalities brought howls...

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