Kinder Morgan should quit while it is ahead

Kinder Morgan should quit while it is ahead

Ten thousand protestors showed up in Vancouver and the Kinder Morgan project is not yet underway

Editor, The Times:

Ten thousand protestors showed up recently in Vancouver and the Kinder Morgan project is not yet underway.

It is not so much the steel pipeline itself that is the problem it is the bitumen laced with toxic chemicals that will be loaded into gigantic oil tankers that will then make their way along Burrard Inlet, past Stanley Park and English Bay, into the Salish Sea, through the Gulf Islands before sailing the Strait of Juan de Fuca, Victoria and then out to sea.

READ MORE: Former Kamloops M.P. warns of pipeline protest (Mar. 9, 2018)

Thirty four tankers a month with each being 250 feet long or 2 1/2 football fields. Once the tanker pulls away from port it is no longer the responsibility of Kinder Morgan.

Spill experts predict a major spill along the B.C. route would cost $40 billion in direct costs and the taxpayers would be asked to foot the bill.

No wonder the mayors of Vancouver, Victoria, Burnaby, Richmond, New Westminster, North Vancouver, Squamish, Sooke, Bowen Island and others oppose the proposal to say nothing of the 150 First Nations in opposition.

READ MORE: Simpcw First Nation signs Mutual Benefits Agreement with Kinder Morgan (May 10, 2016)

The population of the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island and the south coast equals all of Atlantic Canada and Manitoba combined. Can these people just be ignored? Can their concerns just be rejected?

We all know how powerful Gandhian politics can be and 10,000, 20,000, 30,000 people protesting a Texas oil company threatening Vancouver’s pristine setting cannot be simply ignored.

When these masses of women, children and men stand up to stop construction, and they will, what can be done? You cannot throw everyone in jail as they are already filled to capacity.

What could the army do? To paraphrase the Mayor of Burnaby, “Trudeau gives permits but communities give permission” and B.C. residents will simply not give their permission, ever. Kinder Morgan, quit while you are ahead.

Nelson Riis

M.P. for Kamloops and area, 1980 – 2000

Ottawa, ON