Northern Gateway Pipeline 2

269 posts / 0 new
Last post

The BC Liberal Energy Minister, Rich Coleman, annnouced yesterday that four more proposed international LNG projects have been received by the provincial government for the Prince Rupert area. This is in addition to the six that have already been proposed for the Prince Rupert and Kitimat region, with two more being considered. Coleman called it a "generational opportunity"

NDP energy critic John Horgan "accused the government of misleading the public with its announcement so close to next month’s election.

“The disservice this does to the public is that it gives the impression that there is a mad gold rush to develop liquefied natural gas in British Columbia,” he said.

“There are a number of companies that are exploring the possibilities ... but I’ve been speaking with all of the proponents, particularly those that have been looking at the Grassy Point facility, and they’re doing their due diligence. The market will determine how many, if any, of these projects proceed.”

Horgan said he is in favour of exploring ways B.C. can gain a foothold in the Asian energy market, but the province should be careful not to present proposals as if they are finalized projects that will play major role in B.C.’s future economy.

The NDP needs to move away from our fossil fuel addiction that is well down the road to wrecking people's lives and the environment and start introducing a real green energy policy. 


The federal Joint Review Panel assessing the Northern Gateway pipeline has issued 199 preliminary conditions yesterday that need to be met for project approval. The panel must list conditions before deciding whether the pipeline can proceed.

The conditions included $950 million "in liability coverage in the event of a catastrophic oil spill. Among the other requirements, Enbridge must undertake rigorous pipeline inspections every two years to check for cracks, and have specially equipped tugboats accompany tankers out of Kitimat Harbour in northern B.C. The company must also have a plan for monitoring the pipeline's effect on the environment and submit plans for monitoring species at risk, including proposals for caribou habitat restoration. ...

The parties involved have until the end of May to comment or propose additional conditions as part of their written final arguments. They will be discussed during final oral arguments on the project in Terrace in June.

'I take it as a sign that the [National Energy Board] is getting the message that people are really concerned about this pipeline—Ben West, ForestEthics Advocacy ...

The conditions will set in stone many voluntary commitments the company has made in response to public concerns in British Columbia, where conservation groups have targeted the Northern Gateway with protests.

Ben West of ForestEthics Advocacy said the conditions won't sway project opponents.

"I take it as a sign that the [National Energy Board] is getting the message that people are really concerned about this pipeline," West said, pointing out that no other pipeline project has had so many conditions put forward by a review panel.

"I don't think it's going to change much in terms of how the public feels about these pipelines. The safest option is just not to build this pipeline."

Final hearings on the project are slated to begin next month. The panel has until the end of the year to submit its report and recommendation to the federal cabinet."

Any list of conditions will not guarantee a spill cannot happen and the dangers associated with a catastrophic spill are so great that Northern Gateway must be prevented from getting underway.



Enbridge Review Panel's Skimpy Insurance Requirements Fail to Reassure Public





Economist Robyn Allan, a former senior economist at the BC Central Credit Union and interim chief executive at the public sector auto insurance company ICBC, has called the actions of Harper's Conservatives, Enbridge, and right-wing Fraser institute with respect to the Northern Gateway pipeline "fraud".

"Few critics of pipeline projects have had as much influence as Allan. Last year she testified before the federal government’s Joint Review Panel to argue that Enbridge’s insurance coverage was inadequate, and called for a dedicated $1 billion insurance fund to deal with potential environmental disasters. Last week the National Energy Board, in its lengthy set of conditions it is imposing on Enbridge before the project is approved, told the company it needed $950 million in insurance coverage for that purpose. ...

In her latest critique Allan makes several points:

• Bitumen is a “junk” crude which, because it requires upgrading and complex refining as well as considerable transportation costs, “has always sold at a discount” that has “not changed significantly” and the change “isn’t related to pipeline capacity.”

• While major oil companies and their supporters complain they are suffering greatly due to the price discount, they are mostly integrated companies involved in upgrading and refining, and are boasting to their shareholders that their profit margins from processing operations have soared due to the cheaper Canadian crude they process.

• Western Canadian consumers were gouged to the tune of roughly 14 cents a litre in 2012 because these discount prices are not passed on at the gasoline pumps.

• The “supply glut” at the U.S. industry hub of Cushing, Okla., was “largely industry induced” and will be sorted out within the next “year or so” – long before the proposed Keystone XL pipeline to the U.S. Gulf Coast, and the Enbridge and Kinder Morgan projects to Canada’s West Coast, could ever be completed."

When asked to respond to her criticisms, the best Enbridge could do was to point out she was appointed ICBC chief by NDP Premier Mike Harcourt and that her opinions were challenging those of PhD.'s who supported the Northern Gateway pipeline when she only had a Master's degree. In other words when the facts don't support you, attack the person - the oldest lawyer's trick in the book. 


Enbridge seemingly has no doubt whatsoever that the project will go ahead.  They have consultants designing all the pumping stations and ordering the equipment and materials required.  The NEB is just going to rubberstamp the project, with a few meaningless concessions to try to appease the public.

People on the ground are going to have to be the ones who stop the project because the feds most certainly will not.  After all, they represent their constituents (oil companies) and not the general population.  It appears they are perfectly willing to write off most of BC in 2015, because even some / most of the Con supporters I know in BC are dead set against this project because it offers BC absolutely no benefits with far too much risk.


B.C. conservation group Raincoast, has organized an anti-Northern Gateway pipeline art display during this week in the atrium of the Calgary Municipal Complex. "The art is available for sale with all of the proceeds going to the organization’s “Oil-Free Coast” campaign."


northern gateway pipeline

"Over 50 B.C. artists contributed artwork for an anti-Northern pipeline art display."


The following article surprisingly says that the Liberals would likely be forced to say no to the pipeline despite all its waffling on its five demands that the Liberals says the pipeline must meet to gain their support. However, it does say that the federal Cons would lose big time if they try to force it down BC's throat. 


The Liberals and the NDP would like to say their positions are vastly different, but they both appear to be heading in the same direction. If the NDP wins, it will be “no” either by word or by deed. Environment critic Rob Fleming says the NEB hearing might be a nice venue for outlining his party’s opposition to the project, but the main focus of an NDP government would be to set up a B.C. environmental review. And they can: In 2010, the Liberal government signed an agreement with Ottawa giving away responsibility for examining Northern Gateway and several other energy projects. But that agreement includes an escape clause allowing B.C. to give 30 days’ notice to terminate the agreement. But the NDP still oppose the project. “The Liberals have surrendered the right to really say ‘no,’ ” Mr. Fleming said. “If B.C. is headed to disagree with Ottawa, it needs to have its own legal process.”

Still, it makes for an oddly undefined debate about the top environmental issue on voters’ minds. Eric Swanson is running a parallel No Tankers campaign for the Dogwood Initiative. He says the NDP have been more clear and consistent in their opposition to Northern Gateway than the Liberals. But, given the mood among voters in B.C., it doesn’t matter which method the next premier takes to get to ‘no.’ “If the Prime Minister tries to force an unwanted project on B.C., he is going to lose pretty big out here. That’s the main power the next premier has.”



According to an  international investment law expert, "A Canada-China investment treaty, known as FIPPA, will hamstring BC from negotiating a greater share of profits and creating regulations related to the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline for the next 31 years once it comes into effect at the end of October.

“This treaty, in effect, will pre-empt important elements of the debate of the Northern Gateway pipeline and may frustrate in a very significant way the ability of the current BC government or any future government—if the NDP were to win in spring—from stopping that pipeline or bargaining a better deal for BC,” said Gus Van Harten, an Osgoode Law professor who specializes in international investment law.

Van Harten noted that arbitrators in foreign investment agreement disputes will most likely judge in favour of Chinese investors in cases where the host country attempts to impose new or updated regulations that may interfere with the investor’s bottom line.

“If this treaty comes into effect, and there’s any Chinese ownership whatsoever in assets related to this pipeline—minority ownership, ownership we generally don’t know about—then Canada will be exposed to lawsuits under this treaty, because the BC government will be discriminating against a Chinese investor, which is prohibited by the treaty.”

The treaty will protect investors’ rights for 31 years as of November 1."





Adrian Dix has all but ended the possibility of a twinning of the Kinder Morgan oil pipeline to Vancouver both in his comments and a new television ad. In the ad he says that " 'British Columbians are not willing to trade our coast and wilderness for an oil pipeline and risky oil tanker traffic'. ...

Environmental groups were quick to celebrate the NDP announcement Monday, including noted environmentalist Tzeporah Berman, who in 2009 tore up her NDP membership card because of the party's promise in that election to cancel the carbon tax.

'I am going to be supporting Adrian Dix and the B.C. NDP in this election. I'm going to be volunteering for David Eby in my riding,' she said in an interview Monday, applauding the party's position on both Kinder Morgan and Enbridge."



A new study by Tom Gunton, director of the School of Resource and Environmental Management at Simon Fraser University, shows that the Northern Gateway pipeline will likely be hit with many more spills that Enbridge predicted. 

Gunton "said the study looked at all three components of the project: the pipeline, the marine terminal and tankers. “We found there will be significantly more spills [in all categories],” he said.

He said the study, which used an internationally accepted model known as the United States Oil Spill Risk Analysis (OSRA), predicts tanker spills on the B.C. coast every 10 years – as opposed to Enbridge’s estimate of 250 years.

Terminal spills are predicted to occur within 15 to 41 years, not 62 years as Enbridge projects, and there would be multiple pipeline spills – up to 15 per year – not one spill every two years, the study maintains.

The study predicts 776 oil and condensate pipeline spills over 50 years, which is 31 times more frequent than Enbridge’s estimate of 25 spills."



Kara wrote:

Enbridge seemingly has no doubt whatsoever that the project will go ahead.  They have consultants designing all the pumping stations and ordering the equipment and materials required.  The NEB is just going to rubberstamp the project, with a few meaningless concessions to try to appease the public.

People on the ground are going to have to be the ones who stop the project because the feds most certainly will not.

Enbridge is spending vast amounts of money on their campaign to convince BCers, so that does not suggest confidence to me. This week I participated in an online survey by Hill & Knowlton basically on how Enbridge can sell the project to the populace. Their plan of attack seems to be environmental. They completely missed the economic argument.

Pipelines do not create jobs; they export them. We need to get this message out on the ground as much as we can.


jas:  The money Enbridge is spending on advertising is insignificant in comparison to the amount they have spent already on long term delivery materials and equipment, as well as on engineering.  Those expenditures are what lead me to believe that Enbridge is confident the project will go through.  The advertising may be just an attempt to avoid / minimize disruptions during construction by appeasing the public.  Enbridge most certainly does not care about public opinion other than the possible interference with its ability to make money.

FWIW, I know people working on the engineering and procurement side for this project, as well as people who have worked on other Enbridge projects, and Enbridge are consistently thought of as amongst the very worst assholes (and maybe the very worst) with which to work.  Not only do they have a lot of marginally competent people (because most of the competent ones quit) but they have no respect for anybody, treating pretty much everyone extremely poorly, whether worker, engineer, consultant, etc.  I really believe that they really could not possibly care less what the public thinks of them.  Certainly, they have managers who think some of their spills are a good source of a joke rather than the environmental disaster that they are.

Along with the message that pipelines export jobs, not create them, the message of Enbridge's untrustworthiness really cannot be hammered home enough.  They have shown a willingness on other projects to cut corners to save a pittance regardless of the risks.  They also have a history of canning anyone who points out potential risks, problems with their proposed designs, etc.  They truly are bullies and in a oil business world full of scum, they might be the very scummiest.  Enbridge cares only about profits and could not give a shit about the environment, the public or anything else.


CBC News and Power and Politics are reporting that an inspection of Enbridge pump stations for its pipelines has found that it is breaking National Energy Board (NEB) safety regulations at 117 out of 125 pump stations. Of the 125 stations, "only eight of its pump stations complied with the board's backup power system regulation. On top of that, Enbridge disclosed that 83 of its pump stations were missing emergency shut-down buttons." 

On Power and Politics, the reporter on this issue said the Enbridge defence for these violations was that the NEB never told them about the regulations. However, "In the case of backup power, that rule has been on the books since 1999. The emergency shut-down button has been a must since at least 1994. ... [Enbridge spokesperson Graham] White said Enbridge's non-compliance is a problem of interpretation. He said that the NEB has changed the way it interprets the backup power regulation."

The NEB said it had not inspected these stations before but now that it has found these problems it will be checking the stations regularly.

What a relief! If Enbridge only knew about the regulations governing it for up to 20 years, it would have followed them. This news story should inspire great confidence in Enbridge and its regulators among Canadians in general and especially BCers, who are awaiting a decision on whether Northern Gateway goes ahead. 



Kara wrote:

jas:  The money Enbridge is spending on advertising is insignificant in comparison to the amount they have spent already on long term delivery materials and equipment, as well as on engineering.  Those expenditures are what lead me to believe that Enbridge is confident the project will go through.  The advertising may be just an attempt to avoid / minimize disruptions during construction by appeasing the public.  Enbridge most certainly does not care about public opinion other than the possible interference with its ability to make money.

There is another pipeline going in up here - liquid natural gas, I think. I wasn't around to hear anything about the planning or consultations, but I know that the route has still not been decided on and they already have equipment on the ground. One of their proposed routes is through a bird sanctuary.

That said, I don't think Enbridge is going to go through.


jas: I certainly hope you are right that Northern Gateway does not go through.  However, given the amount that Enbridge has spent already for this pipeline, I'm not as confident of the project being shelved as you are.  Enbridge must have had some confirmations from the government to have committed that amount of money already.  I think the only way the project is going to be stopped is by consistent public pressure, protests and interference.


During the BC televised leaders debate, Adrian Dix argued that the both tankers off the BC coast and the Northern Gateway pipeline issues involve a power struggle between Victoria and Ottawa that he would end if elected Premier by terminating "the equivalency agreement with the federal government" on the Northern Gateway pipeline, thereby preventing Ottawa from making "our decisions about these pipelines."



Christy Clark's LNG fantasy pipedream will never produce anything near her 'trillion dollar' boom. Now thanks to the Russia-China pipeline deal, it may be an economic disaster as the counted on much higher Asian energy prices drop as supply increases. When coupled with China's own fossil fuel production, as well as Australia's and Indonesia's (see below), most of which will be exported to Asian nations, prices will drop and supplies and carbon dioxide levels will increase well above the 400 ppm carbon dioxide level we just passed this week.

At the same time, energy prices will be driven up in this province due to the building of the LNG plants because "Much of the long term electricity load is contingent on the development of the proposed LNG projects on BC's Northwest coast. If the LNG export facilities are built, the demand for electricity in the Province could exceed 25% of the existing BC Hydro load (based on an estimated 4 LNG plants at approximate use of 4,000 GWh/year each. For context, the current BC Hydro load is approximately 60,000 GWh/year). This will make BC voters even more unhappy.




The desire for Russia and China to boost trading ties is making China Russia’s priority market, as European demand for Russian oil decreases. Russian state-owned oil major Rosneft is tripling supplies to China to 1 million barrels a day. China is increasingly becoming Russia’s priority market, with Moscow looking to further boost ties, as European demand for Russian oil decreases. ...

Russia has been steadily increasing its oil exports to Asia as European oil and gas markets shrink due to the economic downturn. Around 15% of Russian oil exports are heading east, thanks to the new pipelines to China and to the Pacific coast. 

In 2013 Russia plans to increase its oil supplies to China by 1 million tonnes via the Eastern Siberia–Pacific Ocean oil pipeline. From 2015 to 2017 Rosneft reportedly plans to send 7 million tonnes of oil to Asia by sea, according to Nezavisimaya Gazeta referring to unnamed sources. ...

China is also looking to increase its natural gas imports. With a new head of the People’s Republic it may now become easier for the two nations to reach an agreement on natural gas pipelines through Siberia, after six years of bargaining over prices. A contract stipulating terms for Russian gas supply is expected to be signed in June this year and a long-term contract will also be on the agenda, head of Gazprom, Alexey Miller said.



China and Australia top a global list of planned oil, gas and coal projects that will act as "carbon bombs" and push the planet towards catastrophic climate change, a Greenpeace report warned on Tuesday.

The Point of No Return study, by consultancy firm Ecofys for Greenpeace, calculated that the 14 giant fossil fuel projects would produce 6.3 gigatonnes of CO2 a year in 2020 – as much as the entire United States emits annually.

The largest contributors will be China's five north-western provinces, which aim to increase coal production by 620m tonnes by 2015, generating an additional 1.4bn tonnes of greenhouse gases a year. Australia's burgeoning coal export industry, already the largest in the world, is in second place due to its potential growth to 408m tonnes of shipped resource a year by 2025, resulting in an annual 760m tonnes of CO2.

Carbon bombs map




In the last week, we passed 400 ppm carbon dioxide in the atmosphere, a level not seen since several million years ago when the climate was much warmer.


On May 9, true to form, the daily mean concentration of atmospheric carbon dioxide levels passed 400 ppm at Mauna Loa according to independent measurements taken by both the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) and the Scripps Institution of Oceanography. ...

Ralph Keeling, who took over the Keeling Curve measurement begun by his father, Charles David (Dave) Keeling, after he developed the ultraprecise measurement device known as a manometer. “At this pace we’ll hit 450 ppm within a few decades.”


The jagged saw-tooth graph was primed and ready to hit 400 ppm this May, and not wanting to ignore expectations, atmospheric carbon dioxide levels did just that.

The rate of increase has accelerated since Dave Keeling first started measuring carbon dioxide levels in the atmosphere, from approximately 0.7 ppm per year in the late 1950s to 2.1 ppm per year during the last 10 years.


Northern Gateway Pipeline Crew Evicted By Gitga’at Nation May 16, 2013

gitgaat nation protest


Two days after the Liberal victory in the BC election, Enbridge was testing First Nations resolve against the Nothern Gateway pipeline. Enbridge found it that that resolve was still strong. 


HARTLEY BAY, B.C. – Members of the Gitga’at Nation say they have evicted a Northern Gateway Pipelines crew from their territory on the north coast of British Columbia as it tried to conduct oil spill response surveys.

The small First Nation of Hartley Bay says the crew showed up to carry out work on the project that has not been approved, and that the Gitga’at continue to oppose.

Coun. Marven Robinson said the band received a fax informing them that the crew would be coming to conduct an oil spill response survey.

The letter had no contact person, telephone number or email. They showed up without an invitation in the middle of the annual seaweed harvest that sees most band members camped out along the shoreline about 20 kilometres from the town, Robinson said.




It could be a long hot summer along the Northern Gateway pipeline route through First Nations land.


A recent incident involving an Enbridge Inc. crew working on the Northern Gateway project and a B.C. First Nation provides a hint of what the Calgary-based energy company can expect if the oil sands pipeline is ever approved. The Canadian Press reports the Gitga'a First Nation turned away an Enbridge spill-response survey crew earlier this month. It won't be the last time work on the as-yet unapproved mega-project is tripped up. The re-election of the resource-friendly Liberals in this week's B.C. election may have let Northern Gateway's backers breathe a little easier. ...

But one of those conditions involves satisfying legal obligations under aboriginal and treaty rights, and that may be a tough slog. ...

Art Sterritt (of the influential Coastal First Nations coalition ) said he doubts Enbridge will be able to meet the "very onerous" conditions set by Clark.

“For example, oil spill prevention hasn’t changed in 25 years,” he said. “We don’t think Northern Gateway is ever going to pass the test on that.” ...

Anyone who's dealt with First Nations knows it takes time to build relationships and the process is hands-on. An unsigned fax is probably not your best calling card. ... First Nations have felt alienated from the environmental-review process, which wraps up next month. The panel's report is expected by the end of the year. If it favours the project going ahead, expect more confrontation with aboriginal opponents. ...

B.C. First Nations in the past have used blockades to express their opposition to resource development on their traditional territories. But the real battles likely will be in the courts. Aboriginal representatives at Enbridge's annual shareholders meeting earlier this month warned they'll tie up the project.

“Are you willing to risk extensive legal battles and opposition until my generation is in their 40s?” Trevor Jang, a 20-year-old youth from the Small Frog Clan of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation near Terrace, asked Enbridge CEO Al Monaco, according to the Financial Post. ...

Aboriginal leaders have brushed off Ottawa's appointment of Vancouver lawyer Doug Eyford as a special envoy to explore ways of reducing the tensions between First Nations in Western Canada and energy companies.

"It's going to be a long, hot summer," Chief Allan Adam of the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation said in March, according to CBC News. "We have a lot of issues at stake."


Today the Vancouver Sun has a ten page Special Report section entitled Shipping Oil - Pipeline Economics, by the pipeline industry of course. The first page article is entitled "Energy trade key to Canada's Economy". On the back cover are two maps of Canada, one showing oil flowing in one direction only - to the US, the other showing 15 arrows pointing in every direction and a comment that not only could it mean much more oil exports but could increase the price for Canadian oil from $85 to $110 a barrel. If you like Christy Clark and Harper fantasies where the hero (the oil company) and the heorine (the Canadian public) live happily ever after you can read the lead article "Energy trade key to Canada's Economy" at

The brainwashing continues. 


my mom went to a Kinder Morgan meeting here last night 'bout the "twinning" of the Trans Mountain pipeline to Burnaby. they're just making the facilities application to the NEB and are on way to start April 2016. they said there will be an increase of 29 tankers per month or  890,000 barrels a day from 350,00 out of the Burnaby terminal. and the 36" pipeline will only hold bitumen. edited to add the link in the article above this talks 'bout how crappy bitumen is. a leak of any kind could destroy depending on where break is: the Athabaska, the Fraser, the North Thompson or the Columbia water sheds.

the 'sensitive' areas they'll be going through are too many to name even just here in my community. 

what i wanna know is; given the reality the existing pipe is 60 years old when they disturb the land beside it what damage will occur to the old pipe? will we be having spills everywhere? or are they just saying "twinning" and are going to in the end tell us they have to replace the old pipe and will do so with 36" pipe too which will increase out put even more than what they estimate now?



B.C. rejects Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline proposal

Good news although it probably does not mean much because the BC government would likely cast aside 4 of their 5 conditions if the only one they really care about - increased revenue sharing - was addressed.


Great news but I have been saying all along that the real play was Kinder Morgan and the Northern Gateway was always the red herring.  Kinder Morgan is about getting oil to America and the Northern Gateway was meant to send oil to China.


I have heard through the grapevine that this week, Enbridge has been reading the riot act to the consultants working on Northern Gateway regarding speaking with the press.  From what I understand, anybody working on the project is required to refer all questions to the Enbridge press officer.  That requirement certainly is not unusual (rather it is the norm) but one would have thought Enbridge would have at least been able to compose a proper NDA to prevent this in the first place.  From this, I would infer that Enbridge feels like it is losing control of its message and is not happy about its dirty little secrets being leaked out.  The fact that Enbridge is becoming more worried about it should probably be seen as a positive sign because they are being forced to recognize that they are losing the PR war.


Liberals Likely to Support Pipeline  -  by Bill Brassington

"...When it comes right down to it, the tripling of the Kinder Morgan pipeline has been a fallback option to Northern Gateway right from the beginning..."


To quote a friend on Twitter: "This isn't the Christy Clark I didn't vote for!"


Don't worry, it's all good.  Today on CFAX1070 Andrew Weaver, newly elected Greenie, said that both pipelines will not be going ahead.


I noticed that the CBC also went to the lone Green MLA for comments and not the official oppostion.


On Power and Politics today, the BC Minister of the Environment, Terry Lake, said that the Northern Gateway pipeline does not meet the five conditions put foward by Christy Clark in its present form. He also said that is possible that the proposal for the pipeline could be strengthened and that the "federal government is on the same page as us in trying to address gaps in the proposal". Lake also noted that while the federal government is responsible for the ocean and tanker traffic, BC is working hard so that the land part of the proposed project is "world-class".

Rob Russo, Ottawa Bureau Chief of Canadian Press, commented these statements leave the proposal wide open to approval through reform of the rejected proposal. 

Lots of wiggle room for the BC Liberals. 


addictedtomyipod wrote:
Don't worry, it's all good.  Today on CFAX1070 Andrew Weaver, newly elected Greenie, said that both pipelines will not be going ahead.

i think he'll look the fool then.

Left Turn Left Turn's picture

The Enbridge pipeline isn't dead, not by a long shot. Stephen Harper's cabinet can still aprove the project, which I suspect they will. Indigenous sovereignty may be our only hope of stopping this nightmare.


As much as I think that this is a wonderful and surprising announcement, I take it with a grain of salt.  The as yet unelected, and not yet premier of BC, is probably doing this as a public relations exercise, and not in good faith. 

B.C. Liberal's 5 conditions...

  • Environmental review needs to be passed.
  • World-leading marine oil spill prevention, response.
  • World-leading practices for land oil spill prevention, response.
  • First Nations opportunities, treaty rights respected.
  • Fair share of the fiscal and economic benefits for B.C.

what these conditions might really mean...

  • environmental review needs to be bypassed
  • oil spills on the coast will happen, and the "response" should look like more than doing nothing.
  • oil spills on land will happen, same PR "response" as the previous condition
  • as we've seen from history, first nations treaty rights might be stolen with so-called "opportunites"
  • BC Liberals and their corporate backers are looking for more of a share of the fiscal and economic benefits, regardless of the first four conditions

I don't find any of these so-called conditions acceptable.

Here are my "conditions" ...

  • The existing pipeline needs to be shut down.
  • Oil tanker traffic on the coast needs to be banned

No pipelines, no tankers, no problem.

Catchfire Catchfire's picture

mmphosis wrote:

Here are my "conditions" ...

  • The existing pipeline needs to be shut down.
  • Oil tanker traffic on the coast needs to be banned

No pipelines, no tankers, no problem.

Heh. Right on, mmphosis.

Kropotkin1951 wrote:
I noticed that the CBC also went to the lone Green MLA for comments and not the official oppostion.

I also thought this notable. Although I liked his talking point, that railroading the province's desire's would be (ironically) akin to the West's response to Trudeau's National Energy Policy.

Turning to the Greens makes sense, though: the NDP lost the public's confidence (imo) on the environment to a certain extent which resulted in putting this very Green MP in the legislature.


Why Premier Clark said 'No' to Enbridge (

The fight against Enbridge is not over. Ottawa could still attempt to force this unwanted project on an unwilling province. But for now, let’s celebrate.


jerrym wrote:
 they are not pursuing Canada's best interests. 

no they’re not. they’re not even telling us the truth ‘bout what it is they’re doing.

someone above said kinder morgan wanted to triple output with the new “twinning”. the only way they can triple it is to change the existing 60 year old pipe to the new  36” they’re using to “twin”.

they say current capacity is 350,000 barrels a day the new pipe will increase it to 890,000 per day. they put new 36” in replacing the old smaller pipe they get triple output to current output.

what a pr win for them if they sell this to the BC public as ‘twinning”.  the 5.4 billion they say it’s going to cost them to “twin” is most likely what it was going to cost them to replace the current 60 year old pipe.  the brain trust at km probably thought ‘why not try for a “twinning” get approval and then go oops we need to replace the old too. which they do or shut it down!!! Its 60 years old.

they already got 1st stage toll application approval. trans mountain project description was filed 2 weeks ago and the facilities application is going in in the fall.


Many Conservative and Liberal politicians, both federally and provincially, have argued that because Alberta and to a lesser extent Saskatchewan oil is unable to reach the coast it is being sold at a discount. According to this argument, if we could only get it to coastal ports via BC or the Keystone pipeline to the Texas ports on the Gulf of Mexico we could get the full price and become a much wealthier country. For example, in post #222, I noted that Enbridge claimed in a ten page marketing insert in the Vancouver Sun this week that getting the oil to ocean port could, in addition to enabling us to export much more oil, be a bonzana for all Canadians as it could raise the price of Canadian oil from $85 to $110 a barrel. The following article totally debunks this argument. 

The oil industry's argument is that it actually faces a double discount which explains why we get $85 a barrel instead of the $110 obtained by Brent (from the North Sea) or West Texas Intermediate oil that they often quote for international markets.


If Canada could build more pipelines such as Keystone XL, it would reach tidewater ports where it would attract world prices, the so-called Brent and West Texas Intermediate prices. The second part of the discount comes from backlogs at U.S. pipeline terminals that can result in lower prices for some Canadian heavy crude oil. But is there any truth in the "double discount?" ...

Some [economists] call the claim "bogus." World prices are based primarily on quality and so Canada's bitumen, which has the lowest quality of the heavy oils, naturally fetches lower prices. Sending the oilsands bitumen to Gulf Coast refineries is not going to change that fact, they note.

"It just doesn't make any sense," Michal Moore, an energy economist at University of Calgary, said of the discount argument. "Anything that does not meet that quality standard is going to trade at a discount relative to Brent. All that discount means is that any refinery owner is going to pay less for something they have to spend more time and energy to upgrade. That's all it means." ...

Moore noted that Canada already tests international markets when it pipes thousands of barrels of bitumen daily to the Gulf Coast through existing pipelines. There is no indication this oil is attracting higher prices because it is reaching tidal waters, he said.

B.C. Energy economist Robyn Allan, who recently wrote a report on the pricing of Canadian oil, said, "the discount has been used by the federal and provincial governments to shadow out the fact that by shipping raw bitumen to U.S. refineries, Canada is also shipping jobs."

In other words, these politicians claims are aimed at satisfying the interests of the oil companies only, as the oil companies do not want to spend money building an oil refinery in Canada. Canadian refineries would create more jobs than the few jobs involved in supervising a finished bitumen pipeline, reduce the environmental effects caused as bitumen spills would be replaced by less damaging refined oil spills, and allow higher prices to be obtained for the oil while it is stil in Canada. Let me be clear that I am not supporting a Canadian mass oil production/refinery strategy but simply showing that the claims of the oil industry and its political hacks are false. Even by narrow economic measures, let alone environmental ones which in terms of climate change should be the primary focus of all people globally, they are not pursuing Canada's best interests. 


So what is the 'catch' ?  The last 3 elections we were told not selling BC Rail then they do, then lied about deceit, then said no HST and brought it in.   With these Social Credit-conservative- BC Reform  who hijacked Lib party calling themselves 'free enterprise coalition'  there is always a 'gotcha' or something devious we have yet to hear about.

Maybe Christy is using this to help her win a bye election (that will cost tax payers millions  because she could not win her own riding in richest area of city)? 

As well though isn't it up to Harper anyway? Didn't BC sign away authority or something on this? Christy is just trying to look good is all I think.


If they want the power to block NGP, why don't they terminate the freaking equivalency agreement??


'I'm confident it will go;' Enbridge CEO ready to work with B.C. on pipeline

Enbridge's CEO says he's confident that the plans for the Northern Gateway pipeline can be revised to satisfy Christy. 


The CEO of Enbridge Inc. said Wednesday he's willing to work with the B.C. government to allay doubts it has about the safety of the proposed $6-billion Northern Gateway pipeline.

The province officially declared opposition to pipeline last week, telling a federal review panel the project shouldn't go ahead because there are too many unanswered questions about how Calgary-based Enbridge would respond to a spill.

"I don't view it as a blow," Enbridge CEO Al Monaco said following a pipeline safety forum hosted by the National Energy Board.

"I think the B.C. position is pretty much what they've stated, which is they want to see more information, they're going to input their views to the joint-review panel process and we see it as a pretty good road map to get things done." ...

Monaco said he is eager to discuss the matter with B.C. Premier Christy Clark, but no meeting has been scheduled.

B.C. has left the door open to changing its mind before the panel issues its report at the end of the year, and included recommendations for strict conditions the government believes should be put in place should the panel decide to issue a certificate.

"What they're saying is they have a concern around certain issues. We share those concerns. The project will evolve and we're hoping that eventually we'll be able to sit down with them and seek some more input into what they'd like to see," Monaco said.


The Northern Gateway pipeline is far from dead.


To paraphrase Mark Twain, reports of Northern Gateway's death are greatly exaggerated. ...

B.C.'s environment minister, Terry Lake, has chosen his "rejection" language very carefully. He is saying Enbridge did not satisfactorily answer questions as to how the company would deal with spills on the land and in the ocean. But Lake is giving his government ample wiggle room to one day approve the pipeline by adding the qualification, "as it was presented."

Again, when Lake said, "Our government does not believe that a certificate should be granted," he made sure to add "before these important questions are answered." ...

Enbridge has promised to make improvements, including spending an additional $500 million on the $5.5-billion project to increase the thickness of the 1,200-kilometre pipeline at river crossings. Clark's skepticism is understandable, given Enbridge's "Keystone Kops" reputation after spilling three million litres of oil into Michigan's Kalamazoo River in 2010.

But again, Clark is giving her government some wiggle room. In a recent interview with Maclean's magazine, she said even though she and Premier Alison Redford had a "very public disagreement about the Enbridge pipeline," the two hoped to meet soon and "everything is resolvable." ...



This article alludes to stuff I was concerned about well over a year ago but it really drives the point home.

TERRACE, B.C. - The equity offer from Northern Gateway to aboriginal groups along the route of a controversial oil pipeline would amount to as little as $70,000 a year for some bands, according to one base offer obtained by The Canadian Press.

The company says that is not the average offer, and in fact is in the lower range of a wide array of agreements, but some aboriginal leaders says it's a far cry from the path out of poverty the company claims.

“Only minimal economic benefits were offered,” Chief Rose Laboucan, the six-term chief of the Driftpile Cree Nation northwest of Edmonton, told the federal panel assessing the project during final arguments about the controversial project.


A legal assessment for one of the bands compiled in 2011 and also obtained by The Canadian Press, said the anticipated annual average net income — after repayment of the loans with one per cent interest for Enbridge over and above the rate at which the company borrows the funds — would be $70,500 a year. While the assessment expressed concern that the bands would have to borrow the money to buy into the agreement from the company, an Enbridge spokesman said the offer to borrow the funds was made at the request of aboriginal groups, which might not be able to obtain as low a rate of interest as the pipeline company.

This idea that nations would have to borrow money to obtain an equity stake in the project that happens on their own land is just insulting. Consider that if the project loses money and becomes worthless, the nation would have a debt to repay. If the pipeline causes a major environmental disaster and becomes worthless, the nation suffers twice.

If Enbridge is really serious why aren't they talking about awarding an equity stake outright, and not with a mortgage?

Not that I *want* them to have a successful strategy, as I do want the pipeline to fail, but they are really being ridiculous here.


The following article suggests that the Harper Cons are desperately trying to woo First Nation leaders in B.C. because with only two years to go before the next election they now realize that the BC First Nations could throw up enough legal and blocade roadblocks to push the start of the Northern Gateway pipeline beyond the election date. 


The Harper government is launching a blitz to convince B.C. native leaders to support oilsands pipelines to the West Coast. Those leaders said they will listen, but one said it appears to be a last-minute effort by the Harper government to fend off possible native lawsuits rather than the start of real consultation.

The steady stream of cabinet ministers and a team of top public servants from seven ministries - unprecedented, according to one native leader - will be in B.C. in the next few weeks, the apparent result of a consultant's warning that First Nations are determined to oppose the Northern Gateway and Kinder Morgan pipeline proposals.

That consultant, Vancouver lawyer Doug Eyford, was appointed by Harper in March. ...

Eyford's meetings with those who could be affected by the pipelines "have highlighted the importance of engagement between senior government officials and First Nations, covering all aspects of the government's plan for responsible resource development," wrote Serge Dupont, deputy minister at Natural Resources Canada.

Vancouver Island NDP MP Jean Crowder said Harper is scrambling to win hearts and minds in anticipation of the federal Joint Review Panel (JRP) decision on Enbridge's proposed Northern Gateway pipeline to Kitimat, due in December.

"He's only got two years left in his mandate. If he doesn't get cracking it isn't going to happen before the next election," she said. "The (Eyford) report's come to him and it says, 'you guys have blown it, you haven't built the relationship with First Nations.' Harper looks at the calendar and says, 'oops, I've only got two years left, and these things don't move quickly,' so now he's flooding the region" with top officials. But she said the response doesn't come close to meeting the Supreme Court of Canada's requirement to consult, accommodate and even compensate First Nations for projects that infringe on aboriginal title to land and resources.

Grand Chief Ed John of the B.C. First Nations Summit said he welcomes a push by Ottawa to consult more broadly on oilsands pipelines. But he said the officials shouldn't just stay in Vancouver, and should travel to areas like the north coast where there are concerns about possible tanker spills. He also complained that Harper, who is in Vancouver Monday on an unrelated matter, has never met with West Coast leaders on B.C. turf since being elected in 2006. "That's a fundamental reality of this government and this prime minister, they are aloof to the needs and interests of First Nations in British Columbia." ...

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs, said he believes the Conservatives are anticipating a rejection of Northern Gateway by the JRP. If that happens "we believe the Harper government would simply declare (Northern Gateway to be) in the national interest and overturn the Joint Review Panel recommendation," Phillip said. "At which time there would be a flurry of lawsuits ... and the Harper government would rely on the consultation record as part of their legal defence - that's possibly what's happening here."

But Grand Chief Doug Kelly of the Sto:lo Tribal Council ... said his people are anxious to get out of poverty and want to listen to economic development proposals, but added that some projects - he wouldn't identify them - should be rejected from the outset due to the potential environmental damage.

UBC's Christie said  ... "The feds seem to have thought they could rely on the JRP to satisfy, substantially, their duties to consult," Christie told The Vancouver Sun. "But now they see the resistance still there, and if anything as strong as ever, and are concerned that regardless of the extent to which they may have met their duties through the JRP process, this is headed to a major showdown in the courts, should they press ahead.

"A last-minute push to try to win people over seems to be their response, after months of inactivity."


They are not trying to woo anyone, least of all FN. Who would send Joe Oliver to BC to win hearts and minds? 

They are going through the motions of 'consulting' just several months ahead of making their decision.


The Cons would like to find one or two First Nation leaders, ideally ones whose people are so desperate that they are willing to settle for some token compensation and job offers and maybe rewards for the leaders, so that they can say they have some First Nations support. This has already happened. For example, the Gitxsan B.C. First Nation band's chief negotiator Elmer Derrick negotiatged an an equity stake of at least $7 million in profit but the deal "officially collapsed, after chiefs voted to reject the deal on Tuesday."


Enbridge has said they are engaging indigenous communities in designing the proposed pipeline, and have signed protocol agreements with some First Nations, including the Paul First Nation west of Edmonton.

But opposition from other indigenous groups has been staunch, and not everyone believes the pipeline will bring prosperity to the First Nations along its route.

 On its website, Enbridge notes that the Tl'azt'en First Nation signed another Protocol Agreement.

However, the Tl'azt'en First Nation has now rejected it as they are now listed as one of the 150 First Nations opposing Northern Gateway.





A new poll by Leger of Albertans shows 68% support construction of the Northern Gateway pipeline, which, not so coincidentally, is the exact same per cent that "are satisfied with the safety of the pipeline". However, the Calgary Hearld headline (Albertans generally willing to pay in return for B.C.'s support of Northern Gateway pipeline) is in direct contradiction of the polls finding that only 27% of Albertans support "sharing a portion of the oil revenue with B.C." and only 22% are willing to "pay money to money to First Nations affected by the pipeline route". 

With deliberate misreading of polls and other sources of information being constantly fed to them by the mainstream media, its no wonder that 2/3 of Albertans think pipeline safety is fine.


The Con government has asked CN to explore the possibility of sending oil by rail from Alberta to the BC coast, according to documents releasesed by Greenpeace. CN says it has the capacity to carry as much oil as the Northern Gateway pipeline. 


CN Rail, at the urging of Chinese-owned Nexen Inc., is considering shipping Alberta bitumen to Prince Rupert, B.C., by rail in quantities matching the controversial Northern Gateway pipeline, documents show.

Internal memos obtained by Greenpeace under the Access to Information Act show the rail carrier raised the proposal last March with Natural Resources Canada.

“Nexen Inc. is reportedly working with CN to examine the transportation of crude oil on CN’s railway to Prince Rupert, B.C., to be loaded onto tankers for export to Asia,” states a departmental briefing note setting up the March 1 meeting.

An attached CN presentation paper notes that “CN has ample capacity to run seven trains per day to match Gateway’s proposed capacity.” ... The proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, which would carry crude oil to Kitimat, B.C., has met fierce opposition from First Nations and environmentalists.

Greenpeace researcher Keith Stewart said the CN rail pitch has the appearance of a “Plan B” in case Northern Gateway is blocked, but that it raises “the same or greater risks.” The horrific Lac-Megantic, Que., disaster in July, which claimed 47 lives when a train carrying crude oil derailed and exploded, has focused intense scrutiny on the burgeoning oil-by-rail industry. Some 5.5 million litres of oil either burned or leaked into the environment in Lac-Megantic. The fire burned for four days.

A spokesman for CN Rail told The Canadian Press in an email that “no specific crude-by-rail project to Prince Rupert (was) discussed” at the March meeting with Natural Resources Canada.

The company “does not disclose publicly its commercial discussions with customers,” Mark Hallman said in the email.

“CN will continue to explore new opportunities to move crude oil safely and efficiently to markets,” Hallman wrote.

“The company will consider concrete crude-by-rail proposals, including any specific project to move crude to Prince Rupert. However, there is no infrastructure in place at Prince Rupert to transfer crude oil from train tank cars to vessels.”

Hallman also noted it was the government that asked CN for the meeting, not the other way around. ...

Opposition in Canada to the Northern Gateway and in the United States to TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline has keyed on stopping or slowing development of Alberta’s oilsands development.

The undated memo to Oliver, the natural resources minister, suggests that’s wishful thinking.

“Despite difficulties related to new pipeline capacity, Canadian crude producers are unlikely to slow down production and will turn to rail to ensure their product reaches market,” said the memo.


epaulo13 epaulo13's picture

16 Arrested Blocking Tar Sands Megaload in Oregon

On Monday evening climate justice groups stopped a controversial shipment of equipment bound for the Alberta tar sands. Concerned citizens locked themselves to two disabled vehicles in front of the 901,000 pound load, blocking its route along highway 26 outside of John Day, OR. Police responded and arrested 16 at the two blockade sites.

Monday night’s action is the latest in a series of protests that have erupted in Oregon and Washington since the megaload began to move. The load was first blocked on Dec. 1, when two people locked themselves to the truck as an estimated 70 others rallied nearby, including many Umatilla Tribal members. The next night one Umatilla tribal elder was arrested while blocking the load.

Two weeks ago in Fife, WA, members of Rising Tide North America occupied the megaload shipper Omega Morgan’s office, and did so again last week in Portland, OR. The group also occupied an office of a General Electric subsidiary in Bellevue, WA, that manufactured the equipment being shipped. The group is calling for Omega Morgan and other companies to stop shipping or otherwise facilitating tar sands development. Events on Monday marked the sixth regional action against megaloads in just over two weeks....




how are they getting it across BC?

and what were they doing with it in oregon if it was built in bellevue WA. it makes no sense to move it south unless they going to go south and across Idaho and up into AB and even then it's ??????????? they could've just gone across to spokane and into idaho unless they had to stay out of the mountains and go way south and around the mountain passes and up into  idaho and then montana.