A Kamloops environmental group wants to know why the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is needed when the world is changing to renewable energy.
The Kamloops chapter of the B.C. Sustainable Energy Association has sent a letter to the National Energy Board asking for an answer. Kinder Morgan, which owns Trans Mountain, is applying to NEB to twin Trans Mountain from Edmonton to Burnaby, tripling capacity. The pipeline runs down the North Thompson Valley and through Kamloops.
Cheryl Kabloona, chair the Kamloops chapter of BCSEA, said today the NEB won't consider climate change in its decision. She said of the 12 issues that will be considered, BCSEA focused on the whether there's a need for a second pipeline and on its potential environmental and socio-economic effects.
"This touches the heart of our mission," she said of the shift toward renewable energy sources. "There's a lot of evidence that we can power our civilization with renewables and the transition is underway.
"We're at a historic turning point. The oil industry is short-sighted in thinking that there's need for another pipeline to transport more and more oil from the oil sands. That only perpetuates the 20th century way of doing things," she said.
Kabloona said her group's letter has also commented on environmental and socio-economic impacts in the Kamloops region, describing the "huge volume" of oil that would be carried along local rivers and the dangers of a major spill.
She said such a spill would be "disastrous" to salmon and tourism.
The NEB is scheduled to make its final recommendation to the federal government in January. BCSEA is an approved commenter.