Piping Up Against Enbridge: Nature Canada Signs Letter of Protest
On March 23, the 21st anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill, Nature Canada joined an unprecedented 150 signatories from First Nations groups, businesses, environmental organizations, and prominent Canadians – including Dr. David Suzuki, Margaret Atwood, Wade Davis and Neve Campbell – to run a full-page ad in The Globe and Mail with the headline 'This was Exxon’s gift to Alaska. B.C. can expect the same from Enbridge.'
First Nations stood as a unified block to announce their opposition to this proposed pipeline that would bring expanded amounts of tar sands oil from Alberta to British Columbia, where the oil would be shipped by oil tankers to overseas markets, notably China.
"We will protect ourselves and the interests of future generations with everything we have because one major oil spill on the coast of British Columbia would wipe us out," said Gerald Amos, Director, Coastal First Nations, an alliance of nine First Nations. "This bountiful and globally significant coastline cannot bear an oil spill. This is where Enbridge hits a wall."
To date no First Nation in Canada – and no municipality – has publicly supported the proposed Northern Gateway project, which would increase tar sands oil production by 30 per cent. Production of tar sands oil creates three times more greenhouse gas emissions than conventional Canadian oil.
"Nothing threatens our way of life more than contaminated water and destruction of wildlife. Today, we invite First Nations around the world to join us in solidarity in our fight against this pipeline development and to a put a stop to oil tanker traffic," said Terry Tegee, Vice President, Carrier Sekani Tribal Council.
To add your voice and pipe up against Enbridge, visit PipeUpAgainstEnbridge.ca and send a letter to Enbridge CEO Patrick Daniel outlining your concerns today.
Enbridge is scheduled in March to submit their application to formally initiate the environmental assessment of the project, but they have yet to do so. If Enbridge does proceed with an application, Nature Canada plans to participate in the Joint Review Panel hearings that would review the project.
Nature Canada has previously joined with BC Nature and Nature Alberta in calling for a comprehensive and independent public inquiry on the proposed Enbridge project. Earlier this year, we also joined 18 other environmental groups in urging the government to undertake a more comprehensive environmental assessment than what was outlined in the terms of reference for the Joint Review Panel, which is tasked with conducting the environmental assessment.