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Throwing darts at map won't cut it: CCNB says TransCanada has moral duty to withdraw pipeline application

                                                            MEDIA RELEASE

FREDERICTON — TransCanada Corporation has a moral responsibility to withdraw its Energy East project from the national review process now that significant changes have been made to the original oil pipeline proposal, says the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

On Thursday, April 2, TransCanada announced it had cancelled plans to build an export terminal in Cacouna, Que., due to the negative effects it would have on a nearby nursing ground for the endangered Beluga whale.

The company said it is still looking at other potential terminal sites in Quebec and noted it would file any amendments to its application to the National Energy Board between October and December of this year.

The application process for the public to participate in the review of Energy East closed on March 17. Once it has received all necessary documents from the company, the National Energy Board will have 15 months to make a decision on the project.

The Conservation Council says TransCanada has a moral duty toward Canadians to act responsibly by withdrawing its project application because:
 

  • Too many details are still up in the air for the National Energy Board to make a responsible decision in its review — throwing a dart at a map of Canada’s export terminals won’t cut it;
     

  • The company has demonstrated poor business planning for a project of this scale, failing to file its original application in both official languages, and significantly changing the scope of the project after the regulatory review process has already begun;
     

  • It is unfair to proceed with the project given how little is known about what this change will mean for the Bay of Fundy, including the impact on fishers and tourism operators whose livelihood depends on the pristine condition of the bay, and the impact on the many animals that frequent the bay, including the North Atlantic Right whale, one of the top 10 most endangered whales on the planet.

“There are too many unknowns around this project, especially when it comes to the Bay of Fundy,” said Matt Abbott, Fundy Baykeeper with the Conservation Council of New Brunswick.

“There are a lot of dedicated people in fisheries, NGOs and government working to protect and improve the coastal waters that are at the base of our economy and culture here in New Brunswick. It just wouldn’t be responsible or fair of TransCanada to string our coastal communities and industries along with an incomplete, ill-thought-out plan."

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