Tag Archives: Westridge terminal

New study shows how industrial development decimated fish populations near Vancouver

Editor’s note: To what extent is modern infrastructure responsible for the crash of fish populations? The book cited below explores how a 3,000 year-old fishery was destroyed when the city of Vancouver came into existence, but this is not a purely urban phenomenon. In a 2016 interview, Cortes Island streamkeeper Cec Robinson described how there is very little gravel left in Cortes Island streams because of early logging practises. This makes it more difficult for salmon to find places to spawn. When Provincial biologist Sean Wong installed a new culvert in Basil Creek, he told Cortes Currents there are 140,000 culverts in BC that are barriers to fish trying to migrate to their spawning grounds. Prior to the erection of the first dam in 1911, Powell River was a major spawning ground for Sockeye Salmon.

By Mina Kerr-Lazenby, North Shore News, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

A new study examining the historical decline of fish populations in Vancouver waters highlights the detrimental impacts urban development has had on the local environment, and way of life for First Nations communities.

The Rise of Vancouver and the Collapse of Forage Fish, published in December by Western Washington University, tracks the decrease in numbers of ocean forage fish like herring, smelt and eulachon between 1885 and 1920.

Continue reading New study shows how industrial development decimated fish populations near Vancouver

No spill response can eliminate risk to marine life in the Strait of Juan de Fuca

Editor’s note: A large number of Cortes, Read and Quadra Island residents are concerned about the potential for an oil spill as the volume of dilbit passing through Southern British Columbia increases.

By Sidney Coles, Capital Daily, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Last week, Capital Daily reported that the new 74.5-metre (244-foot) Western Marine Response Corporation (WMRC) vessel named the K.J. Gardner will be docked in Beecher Bay early in the new year. The ship is purpose-built to patrol the BC coastline and respond in the event of an oil spill.

This additional response resource is being deployed in anticipation of the 34+ tankers per month (450 per year) that will soon come out of Burnaby’s Westridge Marine Terminal laden with oil from the TMX pipeline before making their way through the San Juan Islands and the Strait of Juan de Fuca.

Continue reading No spill response can eliminate risk to marine life in the Strait of Juan de Fuca

Canada Energy Regulator gave Trans Mountain a ‘break’ on oil spill liabilities plan, says Elizabeth May

By Natasha Bulowski, Canada’s National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporte

Trans Mountain will not have to come up with an additional $1.1 billion to cover the cleanup cost of possible oil spills from its expansion project, the Canada Energy Regulator has decided.

The regulator told Canada’s National Observer that the Crown corporation has to maintain “total coverage of $1.1 billion” to protect the public and the environment from a possible oil spill from both the current pipeline and its expansion. But others say this is not what was agreed upon in 2019 and that a total of $2.1 billion is needed to cover oil spill risks on both pipelines.

Continue reading Canada Energy Regulator gave Trans Mountain a ‘break’ on oil spill liabilities plan, says Elizabeth May

Trans Mountain wants to sidestep fire safety bylaws at Burnaby terminal

By John Woodside,  National Observer, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Burnaby is fighting back against Trans Mountain’s request to be excused from certain fire safety plans.

In early December, the Crown corporation that is building a pipeline from Edmonton to a Burnaby terminal filed a request to the Canada Energy Regulator asking for a “constitutional declaration” that would allow it to build without having secured proper fire safety permits from the city. Since then, the city has mounted a defence and last week filed sworn affidavits accusing Trans Mountain of dodging critically important fire safety requirements.

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Confrontation over the pipeline continues in Burnaby

At least six protesters have been arrested in this latest phase of the ongoing confrontation between TMX construction crews and self-styled ‘land defenders.’ The immediate struggle is to prevent workers from clearing more than 1,300 trees along the pipeline route through Burnaby. This was to have been carried out between Aug 1 and Sept 15th. The arrests began on September 7th, but a coalition calling itself “Protect the Planet STOP TMX” (PPST) has occupied this site since August 3, 2020. 

Continue reading Confrontation over the pipeline continues in Burnaby