Letters to the Editor

Oil tankers don't belong in narrow ocean channels and passes

Editor: Re: “Kinder Morgan changes pipeline route,” (The Times, June 2).

This story states that “Kinder Morgan has changed the preferred routing for its proposed Trans Mountain oil pipeline project in some areas and wants more time from the National Energy Board to answer more than 10,000 intervenor-submitted questions.”

Yes — change the routing. But here’s a plan that the B.C. public could accept.

Otherwise, there may be no new pipelines until someone arrives in Ottawa that discusses, listens and then plans — a strange concept for bullies. The present “ready, shoot, aim” method will not work today.

We know that Alberta has lots of bitumen and requires pipelines to get this product to world markets. Canada thrives on its raw material   exports. OK, but why have the pipeline proponents assumed that they could run their lines willy-nilly wherever they choose?

Yes, we know that Prime Minister Stephen Harper is connected at the hip to the Alberta oil patch community — but to assume that the B.C. Lotus Landers will accept either pipeline, as proposed, is dreaming. Just forget it.

If Ottawa, Enbridge and Kinder Morgan  don’t get the message yet, then they will in October, 2015, when the real NEB (National Election Ballot) will make the correct decision.

To assume that B.C. would accept these behemoth bitumen tankers in our narrow, island-filled inlets and channels and busy passes confirms that Canada’s energy planners all still live in a cave.

Forget the ill-conceived plan of shipping oil via Douglas Channel. The silly Kinder Morgan twinning idea, which increases,by orders of magnitude, the number of bitumen-laden tankers is potentially threatening us with bitumen spills, in southern B.C. waters. These include Burrard Inlet, the Gulf Islands, and the narrow, busy passes (Haro Strait, Boundary Pass, etc.), and the  shores of  Vancouver Island.

Our U.S. neighbour’s waters and shores may also be threatened.

Yes, we heard that the shipping is not a Kinder Morgan concern. We say it should be of great concern — but since the  wannabe pipeliners do not give a damn, let us help find a logical, common sense path for Alberta bitumen to get to world markets.

Enbridge and Kinder Morgan should combine their  pipeline systems and and bring them from Alberta to a terminal location in the vicinity of Port Simpson. This would address most of the B.C. concerns.

There would be no tankers bobbing around in  Douglas Channel, or on the tricky path to the Pacific. In the south of B.C., the Kinder Morgan twinned pipeline disappears.

Joy, there would be no need for another National Energy Board gabfest.

Surely Kinder Morgan will be upgrading their 1953 pipelines and storage tanks to handle the big earthquake which will hit us some day, perhaps registering as high as 9.0 on the Richter scale.


Carl Shalansky,

North Vancouver

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