report Crop

Canadian Groups Call on Federal Government to Reject Pipelines,

As New U.S.Led Campaign Calls for National Tar Sands Dilbit Tanker Ban

July 26, 2016, Saint John—A new report released today by the US – based Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC), in partnership with the Conservation Council of New Brunswick and other numerous Canadian and U.S. groups, shows the proposed Energy East pipeline would drive a 300 to 500 per cent increase in crude tanker traffic down the Atlantic coast from Saint John, New Brunswick to the U.S. Gulf Coast— industry’s preferred refinery market for processing tar sands bitumen. The report, “Tar Sands in the Atlantic: TransCanada’s Proposed Energy East Pipeline,” shows the addition of almost 300 supertankers would pose a massive threat—in the form of deafening ocean noise, heightened risks of major oil spills, and the introduction of invasive species—to marine mammals like the endangered North Atlantic right whale, the Bay of Fundy’s lucrative lobster fishery, and other iconic regions like the Florida Keys.

“The Energy East pipeline and tanker proposal is too risky for our communities, water and wildlife,” said Keith Brooks, Campaigns Director at Environmental Defence. “The federal government says tar sands oil doesn’t belong in the Great Bear Rainforest or the North Coast of BC. The boreal forest of eastern Canada and places like the Bay of Fundy on the Atlantic coast are no different.”

NRDC, which was instrumental in the campaign to stop the Keystone XL pipeline, also announced today a new campaign calling for a national moratorium on tankers carrying tar sands dilbit in U.S waters, which would apply to the Atlantic and Pacific oceans. In just a week, a petition to the White House has garnered more than 80,000 signatories.

“Energy East represents a set of extraordinary threats to the U.S. East Coast,” said Anthony Swift, Director of NRDC’s Canada Project. “It would be irresponsible for regulators to turn a blind eye to what could happen with Energy East’s oil once it’s loaded onto tankers bound for the Gulf Coast.”

“In the face of these threats—which we know from the National Academy of Sciences represent nearly impossible challenges for industry and spill responders to address—we believe there’s a pressing need for a moratorium on tar sands tankers and barges in U.S. waters,” added Swift.

In the U.S., the Coast Guard and the Environmental Protection Agency have the authority to approve or reject vessel and facility spill response plans. According to the NRDC, given a lack of technology designed for confronting submerged and sunken oil, no response plan can adequately clean up diluted bitumen. Unlike conventional crude, large portions of diluted bitumen can be expected to sink if

spilled in water, according to a 2016 study by the National Academy of Sciences (NAS). The NAS also found that current regulations and spill response techniques are incapable of managing the unique behavior and higher risks of tar sands diluted bitumen spill in water.

“To be at all credible, the National Energy Board must give the NAS study a central role in its review of Energy East,” said Matt Abbott of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, who added the NEB has denied the opportunity for consultation on the tanker issue in Nova Scotia, which, along with New Brunswick, would be most directly impacted by tar sands tanker traffic.

Meanwhile, in British Columbia the NEB refused to consider the same NAS study in its Kinder Morgan pipeline analysis.

“We already have tankers loaded with diluted bitumen plying the West Coast, threatening communities on both sides of the border,” said Will Horter, strategy director at Dogwood Initiative. “Now Kinder Morgan is pushing ahead with plans for a seven-fold expansion in tanker traffic, with no ability to clean up submerged oil.” Today also marks the six-year anniversary of the Kalamazoo, Michigan spill, where

4.2 million litres of tar sands dilbit crude spilled into the river after a rupture in the Enbridge pipeline. The five year spill response effort cost more than $1 billion USD and bitumen residues remain in place on the river bottom despite extensive dredging.

Partners of NRDC’s report — which is available online here —include 350.org, 350Maine, 350 Massachusetts for a Better Future, Conservation Council of New Brunswick, Ecology Action Centre, Environmental Defence, Environment Maine, Equiterre, Friends of the Earth, Greenpeace, Natural Resources Council of Maine, Oil Change International, and Sierra Club.

Read the complete Tanker report, here.

-30-

To learn more about an alternative vision for New Brunswick that focuses on renewable energy investments as apposed to the  Energy East pipeline, check out the Conservation Council’s Bold, Made-in-New Brunswick Plan to Address Climate Change.

For more on the Energy East Pipeline, check out:

For more information on the , please contact:

  • Anthony Swift, Canada Project Director, NRDC, 202-513-6276
  • Tim Ehlich, Communications Manager, Environmental Defence, 647-468-3641
  • Matthew Abbott, Director of Marine Conservation, CCNB, 506-321-0429
  • Will Horter, Strategy Director, Dogwood Initiative, 250-418-1672
  • Stephen Thomas, Energy Campaign Coordinator, Ecology Action Centre, 902-4417136

 

For more information on the , please contact:

  • Anthony Swift, Canada Project Director, NRDC, 202-513-6276
  • Tim Ehlich, Communications Manager, Environmental Defence, 647-468-3641
  • Matthew Abbott, Director of Marine Conservation, Conservation Council of New Brunswick, 506-321-0429
  • Will Horter, Strategy Director, Dogwood Initiative, 250-418-1672
  • Stephen Thomas, Energy Campaign Coordinator, Ecology Action Centre, 902-4417136

News from Groups Archives

Upcoming Events


Protect our Rivers 2017
Mon, Aug 21st, 2017


9th Annual Free School
Fri, Aug 18th, 2017


Master Food Preserver Program (week 9)
Tue, Aug 22nd, 2017
Moncton

Action Alerts

Call for nominations for the NBEN Awards - 2017

Monday, 31 July 2017
by Annika Chiasson
Every day people and environmental groups take action to protect and restore New Brunswick’s environment.  

Over this past year, who stands out in your mind? 

We invite you to nominate a group or individual deserving of one of the NBEN awards which will be presented in style at Eco-Confluence 2017.  Send an e-mail to nben@nben.ca describing your nominee’s work.  Nominees must be members or associates of the NBEN*.

Nomination deadline is September 13, 2017.

*Current NBEN Steering Committee members are not eligible for awards.

Resquest for letters of support: Proposed name restoration for the Wolastoq

Sunday, 30 April 2017
by Alma
 The Wolastoq Grand Council supports our YOUTH GROUPS on their proposal for changing the name of the Saint John River, back to it’s original and proper name; Wolastoq (the beautiful & bountiful river ). We see this as a good place to begin the process of implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; which was strongly recommended by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.  

Proposed Name Restoration: 
  • The name Saint John River back to it’s original indigenous name -  Wolastoq
Purpose: 
  • Wolastoq; (the beautiful river) is the original Indigenous name of the River.
  • Wolastoq is the name sake for the real identity and unique nationality of our People; the Wolastoqiyik.  Respecting the rights of Wolastoqiyik.
  • Scientific studies have now confirmed, what our people have always known; “that water has memory”.    This river will remember its original name.   
  • This deed would begin a process for reconciliation with a show of goodwill on the part of the Government of New Brunswick, and would;
  • Create opportunities for discussions and engagement around indigenous issues.
  • Wolastoqiyik have a right to retain their own names for communities, places and persons. 

The Wolastoq Grand Council is requesting support letters from our Allies; as individuals, organizations, and/or Groups.  For more information, contact Alma Brooks, 506-478-1256, almabrooks.26@outlook.com

Please send support letters to the following addresses:

The Wolastoq Grand Council,
Grand Chief; Ron Tremblay
50 Maliseet Drive
Fredericton, NB, E3A 2V9


David Coon
Office of the Green Party Leader
P.O. Box 6000
Fredericton, NB, E3B 5H1

Additional Information

  1. Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
Carolyn Bennett; Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada; has assured the Wolastoq Grand Council in writing that; - “Canada is committed to a renewed nation to nation relationship with indigenous peoples based on the recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership.”   Carolyn Bennett also stated that ; - “Achieving full reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people in Canada is at the heart of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s mandate, and that the government of “Canada will engage with Indigenous peoples, provinces, territories, and Canadians on how to implement the Declaration in accordance with Canada’s Constitution”.

  1. Andrea Bear-Nicholas
As described in a 2011 article by Andrea Bear-Nicholas, Maliseet historian:  
  1. The first step in the dispossession for the indigenous peoples in the Maritimes began in earnest immediately after the British capture of the French fort at Louisbourg in 1758.   Where place names and names of First Nations in the entire region had been inscribed on earlier maps; both would soon be erased by colonial cartographers in a process described by J. B. Harley as cartographic colonialism.  The justifications for these erasures was found in the doctrine of discovery.   
  2. The second step in the dispossession of indigenous peoples in Nova Scotia began immediately after signing of the Treaty of 1760 by Passamaquoddy and Maliseet Leaders, and later the signing of the Mascarene Treaty.   Although there was no surrender of any lands in either of these Treaties; 1.5 million acres of Maliseet land which outlawed the surveying and expropriation of lands not yet ceded by the indigenous inhabitants or purchased by the Crown.    


  3. United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples:   Articles 1, 2, 6, & 13   support and provide a guide for the implementation leading to reconciliation.

As a distinct ‘people,’ we have a right to our accurate identity and nationality.
  • Indigenous Peoples have the right to the full enjoyment as a collective or as individuals of all human rights and fundamental freedoms as recognized in the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and international human rights law. 
  • Indigenous peoples and individuals are free and equal to all other peoples and individuals and have the right to be free from any kind of discrimination, in the exercise of their rights, in particular that based on their indigenous origin and identity. 
  • Every indigenous individual has the right to their own nationality. 
  • Indigenous people have a right to retain their own names for communities, places and persons.  “States shall take effective measures to ensure that this right is protected”.