Enbridge and British Columbians clash in Parliament

OTTAWA Enbridge claims that opposition to their pipeline is small and isolated, but the voice of British Columbians was heard loud and clear today when New Democrat MP Nathan Cullen (Skeena-Bulkley Valley) presented the first of many petitions signed by hundreds opposed to tanker traffic of BC’s North Coast.

“Our office has been flooded by concerns from all over the province calling for a ban on oil supertankers off our coasts,” said Cullen. “People are standing up for our environment and for our way of life, and demanding their government do the same. The Conservatives are totally out of touch.”

The presentation of signatures follows just one day after testimony by Enbridge Northern Gateway president, John Carruthers, before the House of Commons Committee on Natural Resources. Carruthers attempted to downplay the risks of the pipeline and tanker project before a panel of MPs but faced tough questioning by Cullen.

“Enbridge has been dancing around the overwhelming list of people and groups opposed. They’ve now resorted to backing out of community hosted forums,” said Cullen, “so I was glad for the chance to question them on their record of pipeline failures and their offensive dismissal of real opposition.”

“More than half the pipeline and tanker route crosses territory of First Nations that have said a clear NO. Eighty percent of British Columbians oppose tanker traffic. The Union of BC Municipalities and other groups have rejected the proposal. I don’t know how they plan to answer those issues.”

Cullen said he will continue to present tanker ban petitions in the House, working his way through the large stack.  He noted that the petition is available on www.nathancullen.com and encouraged residents to continue sending them in.