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Coastal First Nations respond to third Alberta oil pipeline spill in month
Vancouver (Tuesday, June 20, 2012) –British Columbians have every right to fear the tarsands pipelines after the third Alberta pipeline oil spill in a month, says Art Sterritt.
Sterritt, the executive director of the Coastal First Nations, says three oil spills of about quarter of a million litres each in Alberta is confirming our concerns. “At this rate we can expect to see 12 million litres a year of oil spilled.
Sean Kheraj, a York University professor of Canadian and environmental history, posted some of his findings on Alberta oil spills recently. His research showed that in 2010 alone pipelines in Alberta carrying either oil or some combination of oil, gas or distillates failed on average every 1.4 days and they spilled roughly 3.4 million litres of oil, Sterritt says. “This is not the path we choose for our future.”
This incident, along with the other two oil spills in the last month, is a grim reminder of the risks involved in pushing through the Northern Gateway Pipeline, he said. “It’s absurd for anyone to claim that the 230,000 litres of crude oil spill from Enbridge’s pumping station will not cause any environmental damage. What’s more absurd is Alberta’s premier claim that the 500,000 spill near the Red Deer River would not cause any environmental damage.”
Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway is a dangerous, short-sighted project that would make oil companies rich and leaves in its wake oil spills, environmental destruction and long-term economic damage to local communities, Sterritt said.
BC Premier Christy Clark is right when she says BC will take all the risks with few benefits of Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway Project, Sterritt says. “We need to see some bold leadership in BC. It’s time for the provincial government to step up and say no to this risky project.”
The Coastal First Nations is an alliance of First Nations that includes the Wuikinuxv, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xaixais, Nuxalk, Gitga’at, Haisla, Metlakatla, Old Massett, Skidegate, and Council of the Haida Nation with approximately 20,000 members that are working together to develop a sustainable economy.
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Coastal First Nations