MPs welcome UBCM opposition to oil tankers, Enbridge pipeline

Municipal leaders from across the province voted thumbs down today against the dirty energy production that Enbridge wants to bring to BC, say NDPMPs Nathan Cullen (Natural Resources critic) and Fin Donnelly (Fisheries and Oceans critic).

“Today’s resolutions at UBCM (Union of B.C. Municipalities) send yet another clear message that Enbridge’s outdated business practices are unwelcome and unacceptable,” Cullen said.

Earlier today municipal councillors at the UBCM conference in Whistler strongly endorsed motions by the Village of Queen Charlotte calling for a federal ban on bulk crude oil tanker traffic through Queen Charlotte Sound, Dixon Entrance and Hecate Strait, and opposing the transport of tar sands crude oil by pipeline through BC.

“I am pleased the UBCM is showing leadership where the federal government has been silent,” said Donnelly (New Westminster-Coquitlam and Port Moody), who introduced a private member’s bill earlier this year seeking a ban on dangerous oil tanker traffic on the North Coast.

Cullen said today’s resolutions are of provincial and national significance and will put considerable pressure on Enbridge.

“The momentum against Enbridge is steamrolling,” Cullen said.  “With the addition of municipal leaders to the ranks opposing Enbridge, the argument for a pipeline across northern BC is essentially over.

“First Nations, communities, environmental groups and now municipal leaders have all stood up in support of our rivers and against this project.  Who else is left?”

Cullen said this summer’s disastrous leaks in Enbridge pipelines in the US have cast critical doubt on the credibility of the Calgary-based company to safely build a dual pipeline linking Kitimat and the Alberta oil sands.

He says the company’s failure to file complete information about oil spill risks and response plans, Aboriginal Traditional Knowledge reports and studies of impacts on local employment and access to services have heightened distrust of the project.