Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson has blasted the National Energy Board, after it recommended the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline expansion through Burnaby.
Earlier on Thursday, the NEB came out in favour of the controversial expansion of the oil pipeline, which would go straight through Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area.
No sooner was the move announced, than the official @VanMayorsOffice Twitter feed filled with tweets decrying the decision; angry Robertson also issued a statement and YouTube video.
“I am deeply disappointed – but not surprised – with the National Energy Board’s decision to approve the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion,” he said the statement. “This proposal is a bad deal for Vancouver and our entire region.”
Robertson goes on to say the pipeline will lead to a massive increase of oil tankers in B.C. waters.
“This is the wrong approach for our city, province and country. Doubling down on fossil fuel expansion would be a big step backwards for Canada,” he said.
The mayor also points out that approving the pipeline expansion would go against the historic Paris Climate Agreement recently signed by the Canadian government.
Robertson added that he would be “forcefully” advocating to Justin Trudeau that he reject the Trans Mountain expansion.
History of controversy
The pipeline expansion is intended to increase the capacity of the existing pipeline from 300,000 barrels per day to 890,000 barrels per day.
But given the fact that it would plough through a big chunk of the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area, the plan has proven extremely controversial over recent years.
Two years ago, many protesters camped out on the mountain were arrested. Meanwhile the City of Burnaby even took Kinder Morgan to court over the proposal, to no avail.
The B.C. government said earlier this year it does not support the expansion project, but it is up to the federal government to approve or reject the plan.
Trudeau has promised to make a decision on the expansion by December.