By Roy L Hales
One of the smartest things Premier Christy Clark’s government has done was ask Matt Horne, of the Pembina Institute, to join BC’s Climate Leadership Team last year. The credibility they gained from that single act opened the door to new possibilities. Unfortunately that door appears to have shut . Premier Clark chose to ignore the suggestions made by her Climate Leadership Team. Yesterday Horne has released a statement that the proposed LNG facility on Lelu Island could become Canada’s largest carbon polluter.
No Point Having LNG Development If We Cannot Protect The Environment
Clark’s government claims it will have “the world’s cleanest LNG facilities” and is “protecting the air and water in B.C.”
It has been more than a year since Environment Minister Mary Polak said, “There is no point in establishing an LNG industry in B.C. if we can’t protect the environment – we want to enable safe development with great environmental standards. We have a proud heritage of developing the oil and gas industry in this province to world-leading standards. This pride and commitment to the environment guides us as we take this next, big step with LNG.”
This statement would appear to be contradicted by the graph at the left, which shows B.C. is the only one of North America’s top 10 gas producing states/provinces that does not have methane regulations.
In previous interviews with the ECOreport, Horne said it might be possible for B.C. to build an LNG and still meet its’ emissions targets.
Lelu Island Could Become Canada’s Largest Carbon Polluter
The conditions to make that possible clearly have not been fulfilled and in press release sent out yesterday, he states, “No matter how you spin it, the Pacific NorthWest LNG project will not help reduce global carbon pollution. Stronger climate policies — not increased fossil fuel production — are the climate solution.”
In a summary of his comments to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA), Horne wrote:
The greenhouse gas emissions from the project and the associated upstream activity are significant and represent material challenges to B.C. and Canada being able to meet their climate change targets. In the case of B.C. in particular, the project and the associated upstream activity as designed under current policy makes achieving B.C.’s 2050 target an implausible scenario.
Top Photo Credit: Matt Horne, B.C. associate regional director for the Pembina Institute, speaks at the Coast Coal Harbour Hotel in Vancouver, B.C. December 11, 2015. Photo: Stephen Hui, Pembina Institute.