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Kinder Morgan

Kinder Morgan’s Transmountain pipeline project would greatly expand capacity by building a new pipeline that would carry more than a million barrels of tar sands crude each day from northern Alberta to Vancouver B.C. The pipeline will travel through dozens of small communities and densely populated urban areas, and will vastly increase the number of super tankers sailing through Vancouver's stunning harbour.    

Oppostion from First Nations and the municipalities of Vancouver and Buraby has increased signifcantly, because expanding this pipeline would turn Vancouver – whose stated goal is to become the "greenest city in the world" – into a major heavy oil export port. Polling indicates 50 per cent of British Columbians are opposed. The risk of inevitable spills and leaks threaten a thriving economy of service, nature-based tourism, and creative industries. Opposition to this pipeline project grows every day.

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- Tripling capacity of 60-year-old pipeline to Vancouver, B.C.
Key Problems:
- 5X more super tankers in Vancouver harbour
- Local taxpayers on hook for 90% of spill clean up costs 
- Oil spills threaten tens of thousands of tourism, real estate, creative jobs
Current Status:
- Application process delayed because National Energy Board demanded more information from Kinder Morgan
- Decision slated for early 2016

This Texas-based oil giant's proposal would increase by five times the number of oil tankers, from 80 a year to 400, that leave Vancouver’s Burrard Inlet Terminal and navigate a narrow stretch of dangerous water before cruising right by the city's beloved beaches and world-famous Stanley Park.

Kinder Morgan wants to use Suezmax oil tankers, which are the same size as the Exxon Valdez and much bigger than the few tankers that ply Vancouver’s waters today. Each super tanker would carry up to one million barrels of heavy and toxic tar sands crude through Burrard Inlet’s Second Narrows, which poses a navigational challenge due to shallow waters and strong tidal currents.

A single spill in Burrard Inlet from either the pipeline or a supertanker would threaten Vancouver’s green reputation and ruin miles of Vancouver coastline, which is dotted with beaches and oceanfront property. It could also cripple a multitude of industries that employ over 200,000 people in nature-based tourism, film and TV, agriculture, and coastal industries.

Cleaning up a spill of this magnitude would be all but impossible. The Canadian and BC governments are wholly unprepared to deal with a major oil spill. The Harper government has shuttered the Coast Guard station in Vancouver and reduced the amount of environmental monitoring. In the end, B.C. taxpayers would be left to foot the bill, because Kinder Morgan's liability is limited to just 10 per cent of what it would cost – at least $15 billion – to clean up the mess they made.

Many of the risks associated with the Northern Gateway Pipeline apply to this project, too. Inevitable pipeline leaks threaten hundreds of salmon-bearing streams, and the roads and ancillary development that would accompany the construction of the pipeline would hurt B.C.’s internationally recognized grizzly bear population. It also unlocks the rapid expansion of the tar sands, which will lead to catasthropic climate change.

The benefits, predictably, are few. It will only create 35 new jobs and provide little revenue to provincial government coffers. That’s why opposition is growing exponentially in British Columbia. Several environmental and community groups have begun working on the issue, and local First Nations have voiced their opposition to the project. 

The expansion of this pipeline locks us into yesterday's destructive oil economy and offers almost no benefit to B.C. It must never be permitted.

Kinder Morgan Updates & Resources

City of Vancouver teams up with environmental organizations to research dangers of pipeline spill

August 28th 2014

Press Clipping: The potential spread of a possible oil spill from the proposed Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline is being assessed today by a simulated spill in the Fraser River and Burrard Inlet. The simulation, developed by the City of Vancouver. Raincoast Conservation Foundation and the Georgia Strait Alliance, drops biodegradable yellow plywood cards in the waters of the Fraser River and tracks their drift on a map to show the potential reach of a pipeline oil spill.

MP Stewart calls NEB decision a major victory for Burnaby residents

Editors | Tar Sands Solutions Network - July 18th 2014

Blog Post: The National Energy Board (NEB) has directed Kinder Morgan to file additional information about its new preferred pipeline route through Burnaby Mountain. In order to accommodate this production of information, the NEB has extended the entire process and is now looking at early 2016 for a final decision – after the next federal election in October 19, 2015. The hearing process was originally scheduled to be finished in June 2015.

Why the National Energy Board must say no to Kinder Morgan

Lee Rankin | Burnaby Now - June 20th 2014

Press Clipping: If the National Energy Board approves the Trans Mountain pipeline twinning proposal, it will be thumbing its nose at decades of thoughtful planning in Burnaby. It will be acting as though nothing has changed in the Lower Mainland since the early to middle of the last century when refineries and other heavy industries were established on the shores of Burrard Inlet.

Poll finds rising opposition in B.C. to Kinder Morgan mega-pipeline proposal


Brian Morton | Vancouver Sun - June 6th 2014

Press Clipping: Opposition to Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline expansion has risen since the beginning of the year, a poll suggests. Opposition has grown by six points since January (from 42 per cent to 49 per cent opposed) with women and young people (18 to 34) most opposed, according to a the Insights West poll released Wednesday.

Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion designed to carry much more oil


Robyn Allan | The Tyee - May 30th 2014

Press Clipping: You would think Kinder Morgan would do everything possible to build the public's trust. Instead, the Texas-based company's proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is almost 50 per cent bigger than what we've been led to believe. The company tells us their project would lead to an additional 540,000 barrels a day of oil sands diluted bitumen and 29 more Aframax oil tankers a month through the Salish Sea and Burrard Inlet. The truth? Once complete, Trans Mountain's system will be capable of carrying more than 1.1 million barrels a day of crude oil -- 350,000 barrels a day on the 60 year-old original line and 780,000 barrels a day on the new pipeline.

Super Industrialized BC

Rafe Mair | The Tyee - May 26th 2014

Press Clipping: Things have become more complicated in the last couple of years. I hold the view that we are looking at massive changes to British Columbia -- changes that will not necessarily be for the good. We will no longer be a province of beauty but one of heavy industry ever expanding. If I am wrong, a fair debate on all the issues will disclose that. With Mr. Horgan seeking support of the very people we want to question, it's not likely that the opposition is going to be of much help.