Pages tagged "Trans Mountain"
Robyn Allan - Posted: Feb 1st, 2014 - Vancouver Observer
Image from Bigstock (www.bigstock.com)
Kinder Morgan Canada President Ian Anderson told analysts in Houston, Texas last week that the Canadian economy is losing big because of limited access to markets—a problem he says his $5.4 billion Trans Mountain expansion will help solve once the project receives regulatory endorsement and Harper Cabinet approval. He expects that could be as early as mid-2015 with a late 2017 in service date for the new pipeline.
Explaining the drive behind oil producer demand for BC west coast access, Mr. Anderson told his audience “tight capacity’s going to be out of the Western Canadian Sedimentary Basin for some time…and as a result of limited access to global markets we continue to see discounts between Brent, WTI and Canadian Mixed Sweet blends… the differentials Canadian producers see adds up to about $50 million a day in lost revenues and profits to the Canadian economy.”
What Mr. Anderson didn’t do is connect the dots. If he’s right, and new, heavy oil pipelines like Trans Mountain raise oil prices and remove the discount, there will be a huge wake-up call for consumers at the pumps. We all know that when crude oil prices are higher at the refinery gate—which is exactly what would have to take place if Canadian producers are paid more for their oil—Canadian refiners faced with these higher costs pass them onto consumers, otherwise their profits fall.
Fifty million a day in “lost” producer revenues translates to an average of $25 per barrel. If crude prices rise by that amount, when refineries pass it on it would mean roughly 15 cents a litre at the gas station.
Kinder Morgan's letter to potential NEB hearing intervenors called "undemocratic", even "disgusting"
Some experts fear the 15-page letter will intimidate people unfamiliar with the process into withdrawing their applications.
In what some call a preemptive strike, Kinder Morgan's legal counsel sent a letter suggesting that some experts and community members who signed up as intervenors for Trans Mountain pipeline hearings may be considered ineligible. The 15-page letter outlines the key changes in the NEB Act -- brought about by the controversial Bill C-38 in 2012 -- and emphasizes why being an expert or having a connection to the pipeline is no longer enough to merit intervenor status.
Douw Steyn, a professor in the Department of Earth, Ocean and Atmospheric Science at UBC, received the letter, and he calls it “a disgusting and anti-democratic strategy” to limit participation in the hearings.
AN EMAIL SENT by the president of Kinder Morgan Canada to the B.C. premier’s office reveals in frank language the challenge for oil companies posed by First Nations opposing pipeline projects.
The existing Trans Mountain pipeline crosses fifteen Indian Reserves in BC and traverses the traditional territory of many more,reads a letter by Ian Anderson dated August 10, 2012. “Increasingly, our operations are affected by the many and complicated issues surrounding Aboriginal rights and title.”
It continues: “Liquefied petroleum pipelines such as Trans Mountain…have the added responsibility of addressing environmental risk of oil spill. These are not easy issues to resolve and, in some cases, may not be able to be resolved…despite our best efforts it is possible that we will not have agreements with all those affected.”
The email was published online by the provincial government in accordance with access-to-information legislation. Kinder Morgan Canada did not respond to a request for an interview.
Critics assail process, say online system was made intentionally difficult
A tanker is escorted by two tugs as it moves through Burrard Inlet. The $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion would result in a sixfold increase in oil tanker traffic. Photo: Kinder Morgan
A new, “onerous” application process will discourage public participation in a federal review of the $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, according to critics of the project.
The application process for participating in the review opened Wednesday and closes at noon on Feb. 12.
To participate in the hearings or write a letter, a person must apply to the National Energy Board (NEB) by creating a log-in account or using an existing one with a bank.
People can also have an application mailed to them.
Wilderness Committee campaigner Eoin Madden said the online process and form is complicated, particularly for people with little or no Internet experience.
NEB officials could not be reached Wednesday for comment.
Rules introduced by the federal Conservative government in 2012 stipulate that only people directly affected by the project or who have relevant information or expertise can participate.
“They’re playing a sort of a game where they don’t want to be overtly, very clearly trying to keep people out of the process; however, that is what it is designed to do,” Madden said.
Residents Highlight risk to local economy, lack of jobs, and toxic spills as Kinder Morgan makes official application to build new pipeline
Lower Mainland, BC - The other shoe has dropped. Now there are two active applications to build tar sands pipelines across BC. Kinder Morgan’s proposal to add a new 540,000 barrel-per-day pipeline was submitted to the National Energy Board on December 16. PIPE UP, a network of residents of Southwestern BC, finds the application consistent with what BC residents have heard from the company in the past year-and-a-half and thinks British Columbians will want to be heard about how these projects could change their way of life.
“They want to turn BC into a carbon corridor,” said Chilliwack resident Michael Hale. “This tar sands project exposes BC residents to all the risks of bitumen transport with few benefits. The question is: ‘Should we put communities, ecosystems, and coastal industries at risk so that Kinder Morgan can make huge profits at our expense?’”
Abbotsford resident Lynn Perrin stated: “I’ve been reading through the company’s enormous submission and don’t find their claims credible. There are pages and pages on the alleged economic benefits of the pipeline. I had to look hard to find it, but there are less than 100 permanent jobs in BC after construction is completed. The small number of permanent jobs is not worth the risks to school children, aquifers, rivers and wetlands.
“The company’s claims sound very similar to the ones made by Enbridge in their submission for the Northern Gateway project. That submission has been analyzed by economists such as Mark Lee of Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives and Robyn Allan, former head of ICBC. Both conclude that there are ‘no net benefits for BC’. We need to take these warnings seriously,” said Perrin.
“What community in BC wants to contend with the horror of a bitumen spill?” said Aldergrove resident Susan Davidson. “I think that a criterion for a world class spill response would be no spills at all. By that I mean not only no pipeline spill, but also no tanker truck spill and no rail spill. Of course the companies cannot meet that standard. We have seen the horrors of the tar sands spills in Burnaby in 2007, Kalamazoo Michigan in 2010 and Mayflower Arkansas earlier this year. The Trans Mountain Pipeline has had 80 spills over its lifetime. That is more than one per year (there were two spills this year).
Davidson offered the following advice to the BC Government: “Listen to the people. Don’t allow shipment of this dangerous stuff through BC. We need an energy plan for BC that meets our energy needs sustainably, ensures prosperity for all and preserves our magnificent environment.”
Members of the PIPE UP Network have spent the past year-and-a-half educating themselves and their neighbours on the pros and cons of the transport of oil sands diluted bitumen. PIPE UP will be filing for intervenor status in the National Energy Board hearings to raise concerns that relate to transporting the toxic heavy oil product through places within their communities.
For more information or for interviews, please contact:
Susan Davidson, Aldergrove (604) 857-1400
Michael Hale, Chilliwack (604) 799-3391
Lynn Perrin, Abbotsford (604) 309-9369
PIPE UP Network
Dear friends and neighbours,
As you may have heard, Kinder Morgan has just filed the necessary paperwork to start the process of attempting to run an additional tar sands pipeline from Alberta to BC, despite a clear lack of First Nations and public support and despite it being impossible to meet Christy Clark's five conditions for new pipelines to be built in British Columbia.
BY GORDON HOEKSTRA, VANCOUVER SUN
Kinder Morgan oil pipeline pumping station at Sumas. Kinder Morgan today filed its formal application for its proposed $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, which will triple oil capacity and bring more tankers to Burrard Inlet.
Kinder Morgan today filed its formal application for its proposed $5.4-billion Trans Mountain pipeline expansion, which will triple oil capacity and bring more tankers to Burrard Inlet.
The submission of the project application to the National Energy Board (NEB) is a key step in the start of the high-level federal review, which has seen pushback from First Nations, environmentalists and community groups concerned about the potential for spills on the pipeline and from tankers.
The application submitted to the NEB is more than 15,000 pages and stands about two metres high, contained in 37 binders.
Tanker traffic from a bigger pipeline presents an “unacceptable risk” to Vancouver even though the proposed infrastructure is 10 kilometres outside of city limits, Mayor Gregor Robertson said Tuesday.
Kinder Morgan’s proposal to twin its Trans Mountain pipeline to carry diluted bitumen from Alberta to Burnaby – a plan that would boost the number of tankers in the Burrard Inlet to 34 per month from five – could be “devastating” for the city if the oil spills, Robertson said.
The mayor put forward a motion for Vancouver to apply to be an intervenor during the National Energy Board hearings on the expansion proposal, expected to be filed this month.
The Fraser Valley Regional District (FVRD) has a long list of tough questions for Kinder Morgan regarding the company's $5.4-billion oil pipeline expansion project through local communities. Near the top of the list of FVRD concerns is whether Kinder Morgan plans on running its new pipeline right under what a senior staffer calls the Stanley Park of the community-Cheam Lake Wetlands Regional Park.
"I sure hope not," FVRD chief administrative officer Paul Gipps told the Times Tuesday. "I think the residents look at that as our Stanley Park and a no-go zone.. . I think if they tried to it would be a fairly good dog fight."
The existing 60-year-old Trans Mountain pipeline runs 1,150 kilometres from Edmonton through two electoral areas and three municipalities in the FVRD en route to Burnaby.
Kinder Morgan's proposal is to triple the capacity of the pipeline and, for the most part, run the second pipe in the existing right-of-way. There are some locations, however, where residential development has grown up around the rightof-way since the pipeline was built in 1953. Through electoral Area D the pipeline runs south of Highway 1 through Bridal Falls and Popkum, then crosses the highway and runs under Minter Gardens and on into Chilliwack.
During consultation in Hope in June, the company posted two options for the route running on the north side of the highway through the heart of Area D. "It could impact a number of private properties and also our regional park property," Area D director Bill Dickey said at the time. "We prefer they stay in the existing right-of-way."
In the spring, Kinder Morgan requested to survey the Cheam Lake Wetlands, a 107-hectare regional park just east of Chilliwack. FVRD staff and directors were briefed about the Trans Mountain project during a workshop in Surrey in March, but the board still has dozens of questions about impacts: socioeconomic, agricultural, environmental and recreational.
At Tuesday's meeting, FVRD board of directors were presented with a staff report outlining questions to be sent to Kinder Morgan to be answered in a timely manner.
Any response from the company will be little more than a courtesy as the FVRD is well aware it has no regulatory authority over pipelines. Kinder Morgan does have an obligation to consult local governments, something the company has been engaging in for months.
Activist pulls back curtain to show Kinder Morgan pipeline flaws and Kinder Morgan questions his credentials
Ellis has photographed places where the pipeline was exposed and corroded and signs indicating where pipeline anomalies may be. A bookseller specializing in Western First Nations literature and a former fisheries planner, Ellis raised an alarm when he saw trucks moving soil to Tervita Corporation in Richmond, which specializes in disposal of industrial waste.
Questioning credentials and demanding answers
But the bookseller, who has a Masters in Science from UBC and extensively documents the pipeline around the Coquihalla and Kamloops, has raised questions that are getting harder to dismiss.