Ocean Mist

Issues and trends shaping our environment, health and economy

6 Jun 2018

Pipelines, pollution and promises

Posted by Michael Keating

The Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion project has degenerated into an old-fashioned jobs vs. environment battle. The federal government, which bought the pipeline from Kinder Morgan, says the project is needed to maintain jobs in the heavy oil industry. Opponents say it encourages more oil production and greenhouse gases. Ottawa has tried to counter that by saying part of the deal is that it will ensure there is a price on carbon in Canada to encourage a reduction in pollution. The problem is that while the pipeline is certain to make it easier to ship more oil to markets, there is much less certainty that the government can ensure reductions in greenhouse gas emissions in Canada. Until the country has a clear road map on how we are going to meet our greenhouse gas reduction targets, people will be sceptical of any plans that are likely to increase pollution.

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