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Port Moody opposes oil tankers off B.C. coast

Port Moody resolution opposing any increase in oil tanker traffic in B.C.’s coastal waters was approved Tuesday, despite some council members’ concerns it was far out of the city’s jurisdiction.

Coun. Rick Glumac’s motion calls for the city to oppose the pipelines proposed by Enbridge, Kinder Morgan and any other company that would lead to the expansion of oil tanker traffic off B.C.’s coast. It also asks that the city send the motion to the prime minister’s office, Premier Christy Clark, local MLAs and MPs and to the Union of BC Municipalities.

In a report, Glumac said the National Energy Board estimates large petroleum pipelines will experience a spill every 16 years for every 1,000 km of pipeline; there are also, on average, three to 11 oil tanker spills every year that exceed 5,000 barrels.

“There have been 34 tanker spills that spilled more crude oil than the well-known Exxon Valdez, which spilled 270,000 barrels,” the report adds.

Enbridge’s proposed pipeline, from the Alberta oil sands across B.C. to Kitimat, would ship 525,000 barrels of crude oil per day. Kinder Morgan aims to ship 750,000 barrels to its Burnaby facility.

Coun. Rosemary Small expressed her support for Glumac’s motion, noting she and her husband vacationed in Mississippi to help build oil booms after the BP Deepwater Horizon oil spill in 2010.

But not all council members were on board.

Coun. Diana Dilworth said the concerns are well-founded but the issue is not within the city’s mandate and concerned residents should speak to their MP and/or MLA.

“I’m not in any way in favour of oil being dumped into the ocean,” added Mayor Mike Clay, “but I support the elected officials at the provincial and federal levels to do their jobs. The city has no method of influencing or controlling this, so I’m not supporting it.”

Coun. Gerry Nuttall also voted against the motion.


 

 

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