The federal Canadian government was expected to make a decision regarding whether two high-profile oil pipelines in the country would go ahead. As anticipation accumulated, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau faced increasing pressure over his commitment to keeping a healthy balance between economic interests with environmental concerns and the hopes of Canada’s First Nations peoples.
Yesterday, November 29, Trudeau revealed his decision for the project set to replace a section of Line 3, which spans across Canada and into the U.S., as well as the Northern Gateway project in British Columbia. Both projects are supported by the Canadian energy company Enbridge.
The projects have been steeped in history, particularly the Northern Gateway, which has suffered legal setbacks after being challenged by a BC First Nations community. “The major concern that we have is that a spill in the ocean—the tankers will be going right by our village—would destroy everything that we stand for,” explained Art Sterritt, a spokesperson for the Gitga’at First Nation.
The Gitga’at First Nation lives on the coast, and they worry that if a spill were to occur, similar to the diesel spill near Bella Bella BC that happened earlier this year, their community would suffer disastrous consequences.
Line 3 was proposed to replace and expand a decades-old conduit that runs from Hardisty, Alta., to Superior, Wisc.. According to Enbridge, it is an essential safety and maintenance project. The National Energy Board recommended Line 3’s approval in April, and since then, all eyes have been on Trudeau, as this would be his first oilsands pipeline expansion.
Approval of the project would permit exports to skyrocket from 390,000 to 760,000 barrels a day, and with further permitting and pump stations, this number could increase to 915,000 barrels a day. But while the energy industry supports Line 3, environmentalists argue that it would merely increase the already alarming level of emissions.
But after all the debate, both for and against the two projects, yesterday marked a long-awaited answer from Trudeau, as he and his cabinet colleagues signed off on Line 3, as well as Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project. This details the pipeline expansion to Vancouver Harbour in Burnaby, permitting a capacity increase of an existing pipeline from 300,000 to 890,000 barrels per day.
“The decision we took today is the one that is in the best interests of Canada,” Trudeau said. “It is a major win for Canadian workers, for Canadian families and the Canadian economy, now and into the future.”
The Prime Minister called the passing of the two projects necessary, saying that if they aren’t built, more diluted bitumen would need to be transported by rail tanker cars. “That is less economic, and more dangerous for communities, and is higher in terms of greenhouse gas emissions than modern pipelines would be.”
As for why the Northern Gateway project did not pass, Trudeau said it was “not in the best interests of the local affected communities, including indigenous peoples.”
The news was poorly received by environmentalists in both the United States and Canada who opposed the projects, and opposed in particular Kinder Morgan’s $6.8 billion project.
“Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has decided to value short-term profits over the long-term health of the Pacific Northwest’s people, climate and orcas,” Marcie Keever, Friends of the Earth’s oceans and vessels program director, said.
And Jane Kleeb, the president of Bold Alliance and a leading anti-pipeline activist in the United States, said Trudeau’s decision contradicts his claimed support for climate change action.
“Trudeau should be ashamed today using middle class workers as cover to wreak havoc on our water, climate and property rights,” she said.
Activists were also outraged over Line 3’s approval. “The Canadian approval of Line 3 is a slap in the face to the landowners and indigenous community members of North Dakota, Minnesota and Wisconsin, who will work harder than ever to make sure this dirty tar sands pipeline does not cross into the United States,” said Andy Pearson, the midwest tar sands coordinator at MN350.
But no matter the opposition, Trudeau and the pipeline giants harp on the projects’ ability to generate thousands of jobs and billion in tax and royalty revenue.
“This is a defining moment for our project and Canada’s energy industry,” Kinder Morgan Canada President Ian Anderson said.
“This decision follows many years of engagement and the presentation of the very best scientific, technical and economic information. We are excited to move forward and get this project built, for the benefit of our customers, communities and all Canadians.”
Is this just more proof that all politicians are bought and paid for?
Pipelines always break.
The Funny Thing Is, Pipelines Are No Longer Necessary
These pipelines are completely unnecessary. It’s already known that we have many other viable options for generating energy. One of them we know of, beyond solar, wind, and other clean energy technologies that are less effective than we’ve been led to believe, is the Magnetic Transducer Generator by Noca Clean Energy.
You can check out the specs and more information in the links above. CE has been vetting this technology for the past six months, and it’s making major strides in several countries around the world.
The bottom line is, we have solutions, and the fact that oil companies and other major corporations control nearly every aspect of our lives is no longer a conspiracy theory.
The argument for why we don’t need to generate energy using oil isn’t even an argument anymore; it’s so self-evident that no further points need to be made. The real problem we must now tackle is dethroning the people behind these pipelines and the financial banking elite that funds them, and replacing them with people who hold Earth, its people, and all life on the planet first in their hearts.
We can create a world where everybody can thrive.
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