The 4 Questions – Question 1: Do you support the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline?

Skeena-Bulkley Valley federal candidates share their views on local issues in several installments.

  • Apr. 13, 2011 12:00 p.m.

CAP – Maggie Braun

With an overwhelming percent of the people opposed to the Enbridge pipeline and the tankers this would bring into our pristine shores, my support is with them.

With the one benefit of the pipeline being job creation, I believe we would be best to support “Made in Canada” jobs.

This means using our resources, to create products here in Canada.

As I see it, we are the responsible “caretakers” of this land, with the obligation to pass its inherent “wealth” to the next generations, not sell it off to the highest bidder for short term, supposed gain, such as “jobs.”

CHP – Rod Taylor

I recognize the value of this project to Northern communities. However, I cannot support the Enbridge Pipeline proposal as it stands today because I believe:

1. The federal and provincial governments must settle unresolved land use issues with First Nations before encouraging any further development on traditional territories.

2. Crude oil represents another export of raw natural resources. Processing of logs, water, minerals and oil should take place in Canada to benefit Canadians.

3. The impact of a potential spill on fresh and saltwater ecosystems cannot be ignored. Backup systems can fail—look at the Gulf oil spill and Japan.

Conservative – Clay Harmon

The Joint Review Panel, representing the National Energy Board and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, is currently reviewing an application from Enbridge. The Panel held public hearings on this application in Alberta, Kitimat and Prince George throughout 2010, and heard from dozens of First Nations representatives, environmentalists, fishermen, and citizen. The panel will consider the public interest, the proposed pipeline‘s environmental impact, the rights of the aboriginal groups and the impact of any additional tanker traffic associated with the pipeline before issuing a decision.

We will not prejudge the outcome of the application before the facts have been considered.

*Edited for space*

Green – Roger Benham

Certainly not. As a pipeline builder Enbridge has a very poor record. I’m told that they have experienced over 600 spills. Their recent behaviour in Michigan was shocking. I would regard them as being the least likely company that we should have building such a line. The risk to both our land and in particular to our fisheries is far too great.

Further I would be totally opposed to oil tankers plying the waters anywhere near to our coastline.

Exxon Valdes was quite enough of a warning let alone the sinking of the BC Ferries vessel.

NDP – Nathan Cullen

After years of research and talking to people across the northwest I stand opposed to the project.

The risks to our economy and environment are great while the benefits proposed are small.

Three million barrels spilled out of an Enbridge pipeline in Michigan — such a spill into our rivers would be devastating to our wild fish and environment.

Over the lifespan of the pipeline shippers would have to make nearly 15,000 sailings through the treacherous north coast waters without error.

We can create far more permanent jobs in the region that don’t threaten our way of life.

Rhino – Laurence Knowles

Yeah, at a billion dollars a foot to go to each First Nations band it goes through, and then a monthly rent to be determined afterwards.

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Next week: Do you support dual environmental assessment processes (federal and provincial) or  an amalgamated single review?