Opportunity to learn more about Enbridge pipeline project next week

  • Jun. 3, 2011 6:00 p.m.

Islanders can find out more about how to voice their opinions on the Enbridge pipeline project at a couple of public meetings next week. Jennifer Rice, an energy campaigner with the T. Buck Suzuki Foundation and the chair of the Friends of Wild Salmon group, is coming to the islands to talk about the review process for the pipeline and how people can get involved. She’ll be speaking in Masset on Tuesday (June 7) at the Green Church at 5:30 pm, and at the Kaay Centre in Skidegate Wednesday (June 8) at 7:30 pm, or after the Canucks game ends. June 8, coincidentally, is World Oceans Day. Ms Rice said she is 99 percent sure that Josh Paterson, a lawyer with West Coast Environmental Law, will be at the meetings also. Mr. Paterson has been working with First Nations affected by the pipeline project and has a knack for making technical information easy to understand, she said. There are several different ways to get involved in the review process, and it’s important for people to understand which option is the best one for conveying their opinion, Ms Rice said. “I’m getting a lot of questions, actually, from folks on Haida Gwaii,” about the review process, she said. There are also deadlines to be aware of. The deadline for applying for intervenor status is coming up in about six weeks, she said. Ms Rice said she will also give updates on what people in other parts of BC are doing about the pipeline project. It’s important to coordinate opposition to the pipeline, she said, and it’s vital that those who have concerns about the project not get tired out by the lengthy process. “Enbridge has a lot of money,” she said. “They have $100 million of other people’s money to do promotion. They are relentless.” Islanders’ opposition to the pipeline and the associated crude oil tanker traffic has been heard loud and clear, she said. “The folks on Haida Gwaii have quite a bit of power,” she said. “I hope they realize that.” North Coast MLA Gary Coons will also be speaking at the public meetings on June 7 and 8.