• Last month, the Canadian Energy Strategy Working Group, of which NB Premier Brian Gallant is one of the co-chairs, announced the Canadian Energy Strategy. The intent of this strategy is to provide a framework for provinces and territories to work together on common energy-related interests.

    While the strategy speaks to climate change quite a bit, it does so in a rather non-committal manner. For example, energy efficiency and conservation is an area of focus in the strategy, but so is “Develop and enhance a modern, reliable, environmentally safe and efficient series of transmission and transportation networks for domestic and export/import sources of energy”. Sounds like pipelines to me. The strategy also discusses transitioning to a lower-carbon economy (not a low-carbon economy). 

    What does all this really mean? To me, the strategy is so broad that it could mean anything to anyone. But, don’t take it from me. Check it out for yourself here.


  • FREDERICTON — The Conservation Council of New Brunswick has released a powerful tool that shows people just how close the proposed Energy East oil pipeline will be to their home, cottage or favourite fishing hole.

    The interactive Google Map allows users to see the nearly 300 points at which the oil pipeline will intersect rivers and streams in New Brunswick. It was generated using Google Earth Pro and documents from TransCanada Corporation, the North American oil and gas giant proposing to build the 4,600-kilometre Energy East oil pipeline from the tarsands in Alberta to export terminals in Quebec and Saint John.

    “It’s a really neat tool,” said Stephanie Merrill, Freshwater Protection Program Coordinator for the Conservation Council of New Brunswick. “Whenever someone asks about the pipeline, I can bring up the map on my iPad and say, ‘there’s the route, and that’s how close your family cottage is to it.’ Or, ‘there’s the pipeline slicing through the river you’ve fished for years.”

    The Conservation Council is calling on New Brunswickers to use the tool and see how the proposed pipeline will affect them. We’re encouraging people to share stories of their favourite fishing holes, hunting grounds, family cottages or homesteads that are in the pipeline’s path.  

    View the mapon our website.

    -30-
  • For Immediate Release
    October 30, 2017

    On Saturday, October 28, 2017, an environmental award was presented to New Brunswick citizens in honour of exemplary service to their community.

    The Red Head Anthony’s Cove Preservation Association was honoured with the Phoenix Award “in recognition of their unfaltering and ultimately successful commitment to defending their community and home from the threat of heavy industrial development.” The Phoenix Award is dedicated annually to a group or individual who has dedicated their efforts to policies and legislation and have been through “the fire”.

    The tank farm and marine export terminal for the Energy East pipeline were slated to be built in Red Head, in East Saint John. Concern over the environmental impact of this project to their home community and communities across the country and around the Bay of Fundy caused local residents to organize against the Energy East pipeline. Due to their efforts, alongside those of many along the entire route of the proposed pipeline, the Energy East proposal was withdrawn by TransCanada earlier this month.

    Raissa Marks, Executive Director of the New Brunswick Environmental Network, praised the efforts of the Red Head Anthony’s Cove Preservation Association. “They impressed many in the environmental movement and beyond. They showed that dedicated, hard-working citizens can stand up to big industry, build broad alliances, and come out of a big challenge stronger and more united. Red Head residents were at ‘the end of the line’, and showed that, regardless of where you are located, standing up matters.”

    The award was presented during the New Brunswick Environmental Network’s annual meeting, Eco-Confluence, which was held in Fredericton over the weekend. Each year, significant efforts by citizens and citizen groups toward the protection and restoration of New Brunswick’s environment are recognized at a special awards ceremony.

    The New Brunswick Environmental Network is a non-profit communications network of over 100 citizens’ environmental groups from across the province. The goal of the Network is to encourage communication and collaboration among groups and between groups, government and other sectors.

    - 30 -

    Award Presentation Gordon Lynaya for web
    Gordon Dalzell, Citizens Coalition for Clean Air, presenting the 2017 Phoenix Award to Lynaya Astephen, Red Head Anthony's Cove Preservation Association.  Photo Credit: Pascale Ouellette
  • FREDERICTON – A citizens’ group in Fredericton is asking why Mayor Brad Woodside and City Council sent a Letter of Support for the proposed TransCanada Energy East Pipeline Project to the Prime Minister of Canada, Justin Trudeau, and kept it secret from the citizens of Fredericton.

    Fredericton’s drinking water would be at risk from an Energy East pipeline spill as identified in the Drinking Water Report released on April 6th. A detailed analysis of the proposed Energy East pipeline route shows that across Canada the project could lead to the contamination of crucial sources of drinking water not identified in TransCanada’s application.

    “Our City Councillors have a duty of care to ask about the risks and impacts of this export tar sands pipeline proposed to cross over or beside our rivers, bays, and drinking water supplies,” says Garry Guild, a member from the Fredericton chapter of the Council of Canadians.

    “We are disappointed to learn that our City Council approved and sent this Letter of Support for this very controversial issue in the absence of an open and transparent debate during a regular Council meeting in which Frederictonians are allowed to attend,” says Caroline Lubbe-D’Arcy, a member of the Fredericton chapter of the Council of Canadians. “This is more than just about a pipeline. It’s about public trust and the integrity of our elected officers. Decisions affecting the public being made secretly behind closed doors have no place in 2016.”

    The decision also contradicts the position of the Wolastoq Grand Council which recently announced on February 8th their opposition to the Energy East pipeline. The pipeline would traverse their unceded traditional homeland through the Saint John River watershed, including the headwaters of the Nashwaak River which is north of Fredericton.

    To date, the following one-sentence statement is the only response that members of the local chapter have received from the City Clerk’s Office of the City of Fredericton:

    “The City of Fredericton was approached by the Canadian Chamber of Commerce for a letter of support in relation to Trans Canada’s Energy East Project; and a letter was sent by Mayor Woodside, on behalf of City Council, to the Prime Minister of Canada confirming support.” (City Clerk’s Office, e-mail received April 05, 2016)

    “With impending municipal elections (Monday, May 9th), the citizens of Fredericton need to vote for a Mayor and Councillors who are both accountable and transparent. This is how they gain our trust”, says Joan Green, a member of the Fredericton chapter of the Council of Canadians.The Fredericton chapter of the Council of Canadians has launched a ‘Publicly Take Back The Letter’ campaign asking Fredericton City Council to publicly withdraw the letter before or at their Monday, April 25th meeting @ 7:30pm, the final Regular Meeting of City Council prior to the May 9th municipal election.
  • How do you stop a pipeline when one family owns both the oil and the media?

    By: Lynaya Astephen, member of Red Head Anthony's Cove Preservation Association, read the original here

    Pipeline opponent’s op-ed rejected by Irving-owned newspaper in New Brunswick

    Editors’ note: Saint John’s Telegraph-Journal refused to publish this op-ed, written by a local resident to explain why over 700 people gathered on the shores of the Bay of Fundy this past Saturday to oppose Energy East, TransCanada’s proposed 1.1 million barrel per day pipeline. Like nearly all print media in the province of New Brunswick, the Telegraph-Journal is owned by the Irving family, whose company, Irving Oil, has partnered with TransCanada to build a maritime export terminal for the proposed Energy East pipeline.

    I am a proud resident of Red Head, Saint John, a small rural community with quiet roads and beautiful coastal views.

    TransCanada is proposing a 1.1 million barrel per day pipeline from Alberta to Saint John. After travelling almost the entire length of the country, it would end at a new deep water port on the Bay of Fundy. The Energy East project also includes a massive tank “farm” to store the oil that would be loaded onto waiting ships — across the street from my home.

    Why do I oppose Energy East?

    I’m worried about the air we breathe.

    Saint John is highly industrialized, and residents are already exposed to increased health risks from air pollution, not to mention the oil smells near Irving’s new rail facility. We have, among other industries, Irving Oil’s export terminal and the Canaport LNG terminal. We have 38 times the industrial pollution of Fredericton and 243 times that of Moncton. A recent study found lung cancer rates 30 per cent higher in Saint John than in either of these communities. The health experts I’ve spoken to say that existing regulations for air pollution as inadequate. Yet TransCanada says air pollution from Energy East would not be significant.

    I’m worried about the prospect of a spill or fire at the tank storage farm.

    The deputy fire chief in Burnaby, B.C., has issued a scathing report on the risks presented by a similar oil tank storage facility on the West Coast. The chief warned that a fire at the expanded tank farm could create a “nightmare scenario” resulting in a massive urban evacuation.

    I am having trouble trusting TransCanada and Irving Oil. Despite several requests, TransCanada has refused to hold a public meeting with Red Head residents with an open question-and-answer period.

    A recent Reuters investigation of the New Brunswick Department of Energy found that since 2012, Irving’s export terminal has experienced at least 19 accidents classified as “environmental emergencies.” In 2013, Irving received a formal warning for taking more than a day to report a storage tank leak at the Canaport facility.

    According to National Energy Board statistics, TransCanada has had more pipeline ruptures than any other company in Canada. The company’s electronic monitoring equipment won’t even detect a spill that is less than 1.5 per cent of the pipeline’s capacity. This means over 2 million litres can spill before anyone is alerted.

    My concerns don’t stop at the end of my driveway.

    The Energy East project would see 115 oil tankers in the Bay of Fundy — and potentially far more now that the Cacouna, Quebec, port has been cancelled. The endangered North Atlantic right whales in the Bay of Fundy are already vulnerable to ship strikes and low-frequency ship noise, both of which Energy East threatens to worsen. Moving in and out of port for export, Energy East tankers would carry 1 to 2 million barrels of oil each.

    Energy East would ship diluted bitumen from the tar sands. Sticky and heavy, bitumen from Alberta’s tar sands separated from the diluents (chemicals) and sunk in Michigan’s Kalamazoo River during a pipeline spill in 2010.This cost Enbridge more than $1 billion to clean up, yet submerged oil remains on the river bed to this day.

    One federal study found diluted bitumen sunk and formed “tar balls”in marine conditions similar to the Bay of Fundy. A major spill that occurs during loading of the tankers or when the tankers are leaving wouldn’t just threaten whales. It could be a serious blow for all ocean-dependent economies and jobs.

    A draft federal report accessed through freedom of information admits that not enough is known about the potential toxic effects of tar sands crude in our waterways. Energy East passes through or comes near more than 300 waterways, including at least six of the St. John River’s main tributaries.

    I want to do my part in helping protect future generations.

    The Energy East pipeline would create more climate pollution than any single Atlantic province.

    A recent scientific reportsays 85 per cent of Canada’s tar sands need to stay in the ground if we are to avoid the worst of climate change. Industry wants to double production by 2030 and will pursue both pipeline and rail expansion to export their product. Filling the Energy East pipeline would allow a close to 40 per cent increase in tar sands production.

    We can do better. This export pipeline puts so much at risk for such short-term benefit. There is much more at stake than profit.
  • ‪Online Petition: Give Energy East a People's Intervention‬ - Follow the link and share it widely
    http://act.350.org/letter/energy_east/

    Stephen Harper and Big Oil have gutted Canada’s environmental review process -- cutting people's voices and climate change out of the National Energy Board review of the largest tar sands pipeline ever proposed.

    Harper and Big Oil know they can only build this pipeline if they ignore the facts and ignore the people. It's time for a People's Intervention... Read more
  • October 15, 2015



    PRESS RELEASE



    TransCanada blocking local residents from attending their Energy East Pipeline Community Liaison Committee meeting



    SAINT JOHN – This week, nine local residents and landowners requested to sit in as observers at TransCanada’s Energy East Pipeline Community Liaison Committee meeting held at the Hampton Inn, Saint John, on Wednesday, October 14.  Blocking their entrance, a security guard informed them that only members of the Committee were permitted at the meeting.



    Residents then asked to speak with a TransCanada representative. A short discussion took place with Pamela McKay, Trans Canada’s community consultant, which was videotaped. Ms. McKay informed the residents that TransCanada did not have a policy to allow observers at their Energy East community liaison meetings and that the residents would not be permitted to enter the meeting room.



    https://youtu.be/a4hdSWxq1Pw

    TransCanada blocking local residents from Community Liaison Committee in Saint John, Oct 14, 2015 (12:26)



    “Unlike other local industrial committees, TransCanada denies entry to local citizens,“ said Saint John resident David Thompson who was part of the group kept out of the meeting.  Mr Thompson has a long history of participating in industrial liaison meetings, and presently sits on two other industrial community liaison committees in Saint John.  “We simply wanted to sit quietly and listen to tonight’s committee meeting.”



    “Open, transparent, and democratic public participation should be the operating principles of each and every community liaison committee,” added Thompson. “The National Energy Board should be required to practice this.”



     “It’s a straw horse; it’s dishonest that TransCanada will go to National Energy Board and use this Community Liaison Committee as fulfilling part of their community outreach and consultation,” remarked Colin Seeley after being refused entry.  “As a person with a proposed pipeline running across my property, I have not been contacted since it was announced that the project was being delayed for 2 years.  Meanwhile, TransCanada has been pushing ahead with work on the project such as the recent borehole testing in Red Head.”



    Leslie Hillman, Red Head resident and member of Red Head Anthony’s Cove Preservation Association (RHACPA), was also disappointed to be refused entry, “TransCanada should respect the interests, the health, and the well-being of the residents and make the meeting open to the citizen observers.”



    Teresa Debly, a Red Head resident whose family property has already been impacted by industrial development in the area, says, “Several residents who have considerable experience with other industrial community committees, including myself, have repeatedly requested to be accepted as Committee members, but have been denied each time by TransCanada.  Back in February, I was utterly shocked when TransCanada hired a retired police officer to prevent landowners from attending these meetings.  We are calling upon TransCanada to immediately open up their Community Liaison Committee meeting.”



    A copy of this News Release and the web link to the video is also being sent to the National Energy Board. 



    Media contacts: David Thompson, Saint John, 506-635-1297 and Leanne Sutton, Red Head Anthony’s Cove Preservation Association, 506-654-7857
  • Conservation Council Logo
    Jan. 27, 2016

    Statement on critical changes to pipeline/energy project assessment

    FREDERICTON — Lois Corbett, Executive Director of the Conservation Council of New Brunswick, issued this statement following the announcement today from Natural Resources Minister Jim Carr and Minister of the Environment and Climate Change Catherine McKenna:

    “We want to congratulate Ministers Carr and McKenna for using both common sense and a comprehensive understanding of the urgency we need to tackle carbon pollution by requiring major oil production projects, like TransCanada’s Energy East pipeline, to undergo a science-based assessment, including First Nations' traditional knowledge, as well as direct and upstream greenhouse gas pollution linked to the project.   

    It was naive and foolhardy not to include greenhouse gas analysis in oil pipeline projects but in its sheer stubborn determination to rush tarsands oil to export markets and damn the climate consequences, the former government did exactly that. One take-away lesson for decision makers everywhere today is that short cuts in environmental assessments are usually anything but.

    We also welcome the Ministers' intention to ensure the public’s right to participate in project reviews. That means the input of people from Edmundston, to the Tobique, all along the St. John River through to communities along our Bay of Fundy must be respected, instead of ignored. We look forward to working with this government in the near future to ensure that the climate analysis and other new requirements are robust.”
    -30-

    For more information or to arrange an interview, contact:

    Jon MacNeill, Communications: 458-8747 | 261-1353 | jon.macneill@conservationcouncil.ca
  • Slogging through the National Energy Board’s process can feel about as thick and gooped-up as the bitumen that TransCanada is proposing to push through its Energy East pipeline. The Conservation Council has put together a Step by Step Guide for getting through the application process to have a say on the proposed Energy East oil pipeline. 

    New Brunswickers who will be affected by this project and those with specialized knowledge about how the oil pipeline could affect our lands, drinking water, rivers, the Bay of Fundy, Right Whale, public health and safety have a say in this process. However, you must apply and describe in fewer than 500 words how you will be directly affected or what specialized knowledge that you have in order for the National Energy Board to accept a letter from you or hear comments from you at a hearing in the future. More information here.

    Join or host an application party! In Fredericton, the Conservation Council, Council of Canadians Fredericton Chapter and 350.org are hosting an application party on Monday, Feb. 16 at 6:00pm at Conserver House, 180 Saint John St. There will be pizza!


    The deadline to apply to participate is March 3, 2015. Apply to the NEB today!

    If you have any questions, contact us. We can walk you through it.

  • unnamed


    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."

  • Check out this show on Global News "What it's like when oil runs through your backyard!" It's a rude awakening about the effects of oil and pipelines.
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