In 2005, on this very blog, I wrote about the take over of Terasen Gas by Kinder Morgan (“Texas buys up Canadian Oil/Gas pipelines“). At that time I wrote:
It seems as though, as Saudi Arabia and the other producers of historic oil reserves decline, Canada is set to become an even bigger player in the world oil markets. This is no doubt good for Canada, but only in the short term.
I fear that because Canada is blessed with such vast, untapped, oil reserves it will be far too slow to pursue and implement alternative energy sources. Canada has a very modern and robust economy, a progressive and highly skilled population, some of the best researchers in the world, vast natural resources and so much more. We have all the tools to take a run at developing the Next Big Thing.
I actually advocated at that time that the Canadian Government take an active role, perhaps an ownership role, in developing a world leading renewable energy industry in Canada.
Little did I know that 13 years later the Government of Canada would have bought Kinder Morgan’s pipeline in its entirety against the protestations of First Nations and of unprecedented numbers of residents in Vancouver, on Vancouver Island and around the country.
This project is toxic to the land, air, water and sea and to our country as a whole and it could have a direct impact on Port Alberni’s economy and environment.
I have challenged the West Coast Marine Response group twice on behalf of City Council to explain how they could clean up a major oil spill off the West Coast. Their answer is they cannot conduct their operations in anything greater than a Small Craft Advisory (Beaufort 4) conditions.
This is not acceptable when Barkley Sound, the West Coast Trail and Pacific Rim National Park Reserve are all at risk.
Kinder Morgan’s impact on Canadian and global GHG emissions are also not acceptable. They would even dwarf the GHG emissions from the coal that is shipped from Port of Vancouver.
We have a massive opportunity to create jobs in the renewable energy industry. For the price of the Kinder Morgan pipeline we could have built the worlds largest solar, wind or other renewable energy installations and every one of those jobs would have been in the country permanently.
That must be our focus if we have any hope of growing our energy industry and meeting our climate change commitments .