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REPORTING · 18th August 2012
Same oil pipeline, still an abrupt halt to the tanker moratorium despite ambitious refinery proposal, say New Democrats

A new proposal for an Alberta oil sands refinery on B.C.’s coast would still rely on the same Enbridge oil pipeline that poses environmental risks to British Columbia’s rivers and lakes, and still means an end to the tanker moratorium, say the New Democrats.

“This refinery wouldn’t change the pipeline of oil that would traverse British Columbia’s rugged land, and healthy rivers and lakes,” said New Democrat energy critic John Horgan . “This refinery would still mean an abrupt halt to the tanker moratorium, albeit with a different petroleum product transported along the province’s treacherous coastline.

“At this point, it’s a proposal without business partners and without First Nations and local community support. It doesn’t change our position on the Enbridge Northern Gateway project.”

The proposal brought forward by David Black, owner of Black Press, is to build a refinery near the coast that would capture all of the oil at the end of the Enbridge pipeline and upgrade the product before shipping. Enbridge and the companies who will own the bitumen Mr. Black hopes to process have not entered into any agreement with him. Black told media on Friday that many of the Enbridge partners oppose the proposal.

“The proposal brought forward by David Black is certainly ambitious, but it is unclear whether he will be able to commandeer the supply of oil from Enbridge and the foreign partners involved in the Northern Gateway Project,” said Horgan. “It remains to be seen whether it’s a pipe dream or if it is a credible plan with realistic price tags and capacity.”

Horgan said if it ever manages to get off the ground, it would still have to follow a rigorous environmental process and full consultation with First Nations.

David Black acknowledged on his website Friday “we should not proceed with the pipeline (or the refinery) unless there is confidence that any pipeline leakage will be immaterial.”

New Democrat MLA for Skeena Robin Austin said seeing as there is no change to the level of risk with the pipeline, then the pipeline should still not move forward.

“There is nothing wrong with the principle of trying to add value or economic benefit to the project, but the potential for disaster with the pipeline is unchanged,” said Austin. “Northern communities know the risks are too great, and that’s why they oppose the project.”
more econ. dev. news
Comment by just a Shell of my former self on 19th August 2012
Since Black has no experience in refining oil, has no financing nor property to put a refinery anywhere why not announce that GM will be building an automotive plant that will employ 10000 employees and will utilize RTA's alumminum for their product.
It makes about as much sense as the refinery announcement but good publicity for Black and his newspapers.

Why oppose development
Comment by JA on 18th August 2012
The enbrudge project is a good thing. It brings business and industry. Eurocan was awful for the environment and no one gave a sh**. The enbrudge pipeline is safer than alto of other things in the area and stimulates economic growth. I see no problem here.
Comment by Linda Halyk on 18th August 2012
Did Kitimat's Mayor just break her neutrality stance AGAIN?

On Global news, she stated a refiinery would be new sustainable business for the future. Well in order to build a refinery you need product and that product can only come from the PROPOSED NORTHERN GATEWAY PIPELINE.

Couple of key points in her statement jump right out at you.


These two words should not be spoken in the same sentence as FOSSIL FUELS.

Comment by FayEllen McFarlane on 18th August 2012
"unless there is confidence that any pipeline leakage will be immaterial"
Can pipeline leakage be immaterial?