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Victory on tanker ban motion a victory for the B.C. coast

VANCOUVER, B.C. - Environmental groups are praising the vote today in the House of Commons in support of a legislated tanker ban for Canada's Pacific North Coast. The motion was put forward by Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen whose riding includes the Great Bear Rainforest and thousands of coastal jobs that depend on a healthy marine environment.

"After years spent working to protect the coast and support sustainable livelihoods, the people of British Columbia do not want the imminent risk of an oil spill to destroy it all," said Nikki Skuce of ForestEthics. "Polls show that 80 per cent of British Columbians support a tanker ban -- this vote showed that most of our politicians are listening."

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Oil and water cannot be allowed to mix along B.C.'s stunning coastline

Vote No Tankers: A protest in Vancouver against oil tankers on B.C.'s northern coast earlier this month, hosted by Forest Ethics and the Dogwood Initiative. Photo: forestethics.org

Beneath Alaska, between the islands of Haida Gwaii and the northern British Columbia coast, is the wide but shallow Hecate Strait. Originally termed Seegaay by the Haida, Captain George Henry Richards, affixed the name Hecate to the strait in the early 1860s. Hecate was a Greek goddess associated with magic and crossroads, a governess of the wilderness and liminal regions where the spirits interact with the living.

The title has proved an appropriate one for the region. The north coast is unique, famous for its Kermode or spirit bears, a rare and regionally isolated white variant of the black bear that haunts the local forests. Even the woods themselves are rare, as temperate rainforests such as the Great Bear Rainforest cover less than one per cent of the earth's surface.

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B.C. Municipalities vote against Enbridge pipeline and oil tankers

Oct 1, 2010, Village of Queen Charlotte

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE October 1, 2010

(WHISTER) Today at the Union of British Columbia Municipalities annual convention in Whistler delegates from B.C. municipalities resoundingly voted in opposition to the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline and oil tanker traffic on B.C.‘s north coast.

"I am overwhelmed and very grateful to the delegates of the UBCM for standing up for coastal communities on an issue that has provincial and national significance," said Leslie Johnson, a councillor with the Village of Queen Charlotte.

"Understanding of the issue is growing, and that is leading to stronger opposition across the province," said Carol Kulesha, Mayor of the Village of Queen Charlotte.

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Enbridge issued final notice of trespass by Wet'suwet'en hereditary chiefs

Representatives of Enbridge received formal notice from Wet'suweten hereditary chiefs that the company was trespassing on Wet'suwet'en lands. Photo: Pat Moss
Representatives of Enbridge received formal notice from Wet'suweten hereditary chiefs that the company was trespassing on Wet'suwet'en lands.

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| December 19, 2014
Columnists

Four reasons why the tar sands are in deep trouble

Photo: Susan Melkisethian/flickr

It doesn't matter.

Ever since the debate over the Keystone XL pipeline exploded three and half years ago, that's been the argument from the project's liberal supporters. Sure, the oil that Keystone would carry from the Alberta tar sands is three to four times more greenhouse-gas-intensive than conventional crude. But that's not on Keystone XL, we're told. Why? Because if TransCanada isn't able to build Keystone to the south, then another pipeline will be built to the west or east. Or that dirty oil will be transported by rail. But make no mistake, we have long been assured: all that carbon buried beneath Alberta's boreal forest will be mined no matter what the president decides.

Columnists

Tar sands pipeline politics -- now it's Energy East

Image: Environmental Defence Canada/flickr

In a recent CBC radio interview on the politics show The House, Gary Doer, Canada's ambassador to the United States, discussed Republican gains in the recent U.S. mid-term election. He predicted that a Republican-controlled U.S. Senate will likely vote to endorse the Keystone XL pipeline by amending an energy efficiency bill. Keystone XL, if then also approved by U.S. President Barack Obama, would transport diluted bitumen from the Alberta tar sands south through the U.S. to Gulf Coast refineries and ports.

| November 17, 2014
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