Op-ed in The Seattle Times: Canadian oil pipeline is giant step backward
Our neighbors in Canada have been good partners in the fight against climate change and efforts to keep our seas healthy. However, this week Canada took a major step backward.
Our lands and waters share incredible bounty and beauty. Trekking across forests and mountains, exploring beaches in search of shellfish and fishing from clear waters are all part of our regional way of life and economy.
This shared heritage is supported by Washington state’s efforts to act on climate, reduce toxics, protect our orcas, improve oil-transport safety and fight back against the Trump administration’s efforts to privatize national forests and expand offshore oil drilling.
But now it appears a new threat is coming to us from the north. As Texas-based Kinder Morgan wavers over its intention to continue building its controversial Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion, the Canadian government announced it will spend billions of dollars to purchase the project and continue construction, in order to export oil to Asia.
The pipeline expansion would increase Canadian oil-tanker traffic sevenfold, putting an estimated 350 more tankers a year in the Salish Sea, critical habitat where our orcas do most of their hunting. It would significantly increase the risk of oil spills and take us backward in our transition to a clean-energy future.
Read the full op-ed here.