North Island-Powell River election candidates state their stance on Trans Mountain

Published on October 7, 2019

The Westshore Marine Terminals in Burnaby is preparing for a seven-fold increase in tankerr traffic with the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline. (Kiner Morgan photo)

Vancouver Island, BC — 

The expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is aimed to diversify Canada’s markets for petroleum and lessen its dependence on exporting to the United States, but this brings a significant increase in tanker traffic from the Vancouver area. Is Trans Mountain beneficial for Vancouver Island residents?

Rachel Blaney, NDP:

The expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is aimed to diversify Canada’s markets for petroleum and lessen its dependence on exporting to the United States, but this brings a significant increase in tanker traffic from the Vancouver area. Is Trans Mountain beneficial for Vancouver Island residents?

I have spoken many times against the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline. The government failed twice to properly consult the Indigenous communities along the route, many of whom are opposed to it. Their rights and title must be recognized. Purchasing the pipeline for 4.5 billion, with another 9 to 15 billion to go for the expansion is a terrible use of tax dollars. The economy in our region relies on the ocean and the increased tanker traffic and the potential for a spill is a risk we cannot afford to take. We need to be working towards a sustainable future. Investing in pipelines does the opposite.

Peter Shwarzhoff, Liberal:

The expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is aimed to diversify Canada’s markets for petroleum and lessen its dependence on exporting to the United States, but this brings a significant increase in tanker traffic from the Vancouver area. Is Trans Mountain beneficial for Vancouver Island residents?

Like you, I am terrified by the thought of oil spilling into our waters. The expansion to the pipeline will add to the risk we already have. Presently 1.2 million barrels per day of oil goes through the Strait of Juan de Fuca, much of it inbound from Alaska. I can sleep at night though, thanks to a dramatic effort to improve marine safety – to keep a spill from ever happening. Taxes on this pipeline will all go into clean energy projects and Indigenous groups are encouraged to benefit economically through buying the pipeline or through revenue sharing agreements. It is worth the risk.

Mark de Bruijn, Green:

The expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is aimed to diversify Canada’s markets for petroleum and lessen its dependence on exporting to the United States, but this brings a significant increase in tanker traffic from the Vancouver area. Is Trans Mountain beneficial for Vancouver Island residents?

Trans Mountain intends to ship the lowest grade, highest cost oil on the planet through Vancouver and then BC coastal waters where a spill would devastate the fishery, wildlife and tourism. In exchange for this risk, not a single job will be generated for Vancouver Islanders.

Trans Mountain has no long term contracts in Asia to diversify its customer base. Currently, all tanker shipments by Trans Mountain go to the US for expensive, specialized processing.

In a world of global warming, the least desirable product will be bitumen. Massive new investments for bitumen upgraders in Asia will not happen.

Shelley Downey, Conservative:

The expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline is aimed to diversify Canada’s markets for petroleum and lessen its dependence on exporting to the United States, but this brings a significant increase in tanker traffic from the Vancouver area. Is Trans Mountain beneficial for Vancouver Island residents?

The Trans Mountain pipeline is beneficial to all islanders and Canadians. There are many people living in our riding that support themselves and their families by working in the oil and gas sector. The twinning of the pipeline provides jobs and access to markets for our natural resource. The accompanying tax dollars allow Canada to offer the services and safety net that we have.

Goods are already moving through our waters with the use of pilots on board ships. This has proven to be a good safety practise.