The recent approval of pipeline projects in Canada is expected to increase the amount of oil tankers transiting Canadian waters.

This development, along with the steady rise of tanker movements around the world, has raised questions about the opportunities and risks for coastal and Indigenous communities, the environment and the economy. More specifically questions have arisen in the measures available to deal with  oil spills, and any preventative measures to make this vessels safer.

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Counter-Point  Canadians share an interest in protecting the ocean environment. To that end the Ocean Protection Plan and other industry led initiatives have set up frameworks to deal with any potential spills, and to enforce emergency preparedness plans when needed.  Canadian Energy Industry is constantly innovating their spill response systems and technologies to ensure Canada remains one step ahead of any eventuality or spill.
Counter-Point  Even though the West Coast is a vulnerable ecosystem the risk and frequency of large oil spills over 10 000 barrels is around 0.04%
Counter-point There currently isn’t tanker traffic where the tanker ban would be placed, but there are tugboats that haul supplies to communities along the northern coast.

Counter-Point: The National Energy Board concurred that there was a risk to killer whale populations, however Project-related marine vessels would be a small fraction added on to already cumulative effects.

Counter-Point: vessels without AIS are the real culprit for high power wave events. This excludes tankers and tugboats. While tugs do represent a portion of the wave events, not all tug boats are being used to pilot tankers through the inlet.

Despite claims that shipping will increase underwater noise and disturb the habitat of beluga whales, the federal impact assessment found that the effects from the GNL Quebec on sound and on the marine mammal population would be insignificant.

 Since 1956 there has never been a spill from oil tankers transporting oil from Trans Mountain’s Westridge Terminal.


Citizen’s Guide to Tanker Safety & Spill Response

Title: Citizen’s Guide to Tanker Safety & Spill Response Author: Stewart Muir, Don Hauka, Kim Lonsdale, Scott Simpson and Joe Spears Publisher: Resource Works Date: May 2018 Full Text Article Summary: The Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project (TMEP) was announced in May 2012 and approved four and one half years later in December 2016.

BCBC SUBMISSION: Bill C-48 (Oil Tanker Moratorium Act)

Title: BCBC SUBMISSION: Bill C-48 (Oil Tanker Moratorium Act) Author:  Business Council of BC Publisher: Business Council of BC Date: April 12th, 2019 Full Report Here Summary: The B.C. Business Council’s View is that C-48 should not be passed

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