Liberal bill to ban tankers on North Coast a good first step, Cullen says

FOR  IMMEDIATE  RELEASE                    

MAY 12, 2017

OTTAWA – Proposed legislation tabled by the Liberals in Parliament today to ban crude oil tanker traffic along BC.'s North Coast is the direct result of decades of hard work by Northwest First Nations and communities to protect sensitive marine environments that have sustained coastal peoples for thousands of years, MP Nathan Cullen said today.

“Congratulations to everyone who has played a part in finally getting the federal government to understand the absolute need for a moratorium on tanker traffic and loading and unloading facilities at ports in northern BC.

“Today is a milestone along a journey that began over 40 years ago to ban crude oil tanker traffic along our precious coast.

“But the devil is in the details and we’ll all be watching to make sure study of the proposed legislation is evidence-based and includes people in the Northwest who understand the risks of tanker traffic and have the most at stake in seeing strong protection of our coastline.”

Cullen said the bill that is eventually placed before Parliament for a vote “must have the fingerprints of Northwesterners all over it.”

Cullen is pleased the proposed new law uses much of the private member’s bill he introduced in Parliament in 2015 calling for a ban on oil supertankers on the North Coast while instructing the National Energy Board to increase consultation with First Nations and communities and assess value-added job impacts when considering energy projects. 

His bill, An Act to Defend the Pacific Northwest, was voted down by the then-Conservative government but resulted in a strong coalition dedicated to defending Northern coastlines, rivers and communities against Northern Gateway. Cullen’s work also robbed the Conservatives of a number of key BC ridings in the 2015 federal election.

Transportation Minister Marc Garneau’s proposed legislation introduced in Parliament this morning would prohibit oil tankers from carrying crude and persistent oils as cargo from stopping, loading or unloading at ports or marine installations in northern BC.

LINKhttp://nathancullen.ndp.ca/liberal-bill-to-ban-tankers-on-north-coast-a-good-first-step-cullen-says

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Contact:         Shelley Browne, 250-877-4140, nathan.cullen.c1@parl.gc.ca