Oil spill in English Bay – imagine it happening here

Green Party leader and local candidate comment on the spill in Vancouver

  • Apr. 14, 2015 6:00 p.m.

The inadequate response to the spill of bunker-C fuel in English Bay in Vancouver is a wake-up call for residents of Vancouver Island, Glenn Sollitt, Green Party of Canada candidate for Courtenay-Alberni, said Friday.

“It tells us that everything the Harper government and Kinder Morgan told us about protecting us from spills from pipelines and tankers is just lip service,” Sollitt said through a news release.

The Greens say a slow response time, a lack of communication and a lack of coordination between agencies show there was no plan, other than to call a private company — half-owned by Kinder Morgan — hours later to ask for their help.

“Imagine if this had instead been a tanker spill off either the east or west coasts of Vancouver Island,” said Sollitt. “Imagine the blow to our local economies as we tried to clean up and recover.”

Green Party of Canada leader Elizabeth May  also said the spill was likely worse due to a series of cuts made by the Conservative government.

“In the last few years, over a chorus of outrage and objections by British Columbians, Stephen Harper closed the Kitsilano Coast Guard station, the Vancouver Environment Canada station of Environmental Emergencies and the Marine Mammal Contaminants Programme within DFO,” May said.

The Environmental Emergencies Program in Environment Canada used to have regional offices in Vancouver, Edmonton, Toronto, Montreal, Dartmouth and St. John’s. Since 2012, they have been replaced with a 1-800 number that rings in Gatineau, Que. and Montreal.

“No wonder spill response time was slow and communications with the City of Vancouver unacceptably slow,” said Claire Martin, Green Party candidate in North Vancouver, former national meteorologist, and former Environment Canada scientist.

— NEWS Staff/Green Party news release

Just Posted

The proposed running track upgrade at Ballenas Secondary is now on course. (PQB News file photo)
RDN: Parksville track upgrade project gains some traction

Staff recommends board approve $204,000 funding

The total earnings of Town of Qualicum Beach council and mayor amounted to $186,649 in 2020, including expenses. (Town of Qualicum Beach photo)
Nine Qualicum Beach town employees earned more than $100K in 2020

Mayor and council received earnings totalling $186,649

(PQB News file photo)
Fireworks report highlights enforcement challenges for Regional District of Nanaimo

Director: ‘I just think it’s wasting everybody’s time’

Terry Mazzei next to a truck after it was struck by lightning, with him inside, on Wednesday afternoon, June 9. He walked away from the incident without injury and the truck sustained only mild damage; a blown front tire and newly broken gas gauge. (Wendy Mazzei photo)
Nanoose Bay man walks away unscathed after lightning strike

VIDEO: ‘We like to think that his dad was watching over him’

Douglas Holmes, current Alberni-Clayoquot Regional District chief administrative officer, is set to take on that position at the Regional District of Nanaimo come late August. (Submitted photo)
Regional District of Nanaimo’s next CAO keen to work on building partnerships

Douglas Holmes to take over top administrator role with RDN this summer

At an outdoor drive-in convocation ceremony, Mount Royal University bestows an honorary Doctor of Laws on Blackfoot Elder and residential school survivor Clarence Wolfleg in Calgary on Tuesday, June 8, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jeff McIntosh
‘You didn’t get the best of me’: Residential school survivor gets honorary doctorate

Clarence Wolfleg receives honorary doctorate from Mount Royal University, the highest honour the school gives out

Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau participates in a plenary session at the G7 Summit in Carbis Bay, England on Friday June 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Canada donating 13M surplus COVID-19 vaccine doses to poor countries

Trudeau says the government will pay for 87 million shots to be distributed to poor countries

Indigenous Services Minister Marc Miller is seen during a news conference, Wednesday May 19, 2021 in Ottawa. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Adrian Wyld
Indigenous child-welfare battle heads to court despite calls for Ottawa to drop cases

Feds are poised to argue against two Canadian Human Rights Tribunal rulings

The Great Ogopogo Bathtub Race has been held in Summerland as a fundraising event. Do you know which Canadian city introduced this sport? (Black Press file photo)
QUIZ: A summer’s day at the water

How much do you know about boats, lakes and water?

Two-year-old Ivy McLeod laughs while playing with Lucky the puppy outside their Chilliwack home on Thursday, June 10, 2021. (Jenna Hauck/ Chilliwack Progress)
VIDEO: B.C. family finds ‘perfect’ puppy with limb difference for 2-year-old Ivy

Ivy has special bond with Lucky the puppy who was also born with limb difference

A million-dollar ticket was sold to an individual in Vernon from the Lotto Max draw Friday, June 11, 2021. (Photo courtesy of BCLC)
Lottery ticket worth $1 million sold in Vernon

One lucky individual holds one of 20 tickets worth $1 million from Friday’s Lotto Max draw

“65 years, I’ve carried the stories in my mind and live it every day,” says Jack Kruger. (Athena Bonneau)
‘Maybe this time they will listen’: Survivor shares stories from B.C. residential school

Jack Kruger, living in Syilx territory, wasn’t surprised by news of 215 children’s remains found on the grounds of the former Kamloops Indian Residential School

A logging truck carries its load down the Elaho Valley near in Squamish, B.C. in this file photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chuck Stoody
Squamish Nation calls for old-growth logging moratorium in its territory

The nation says 44% of old-growth forests in its 6,900-square kilometre territory are protected while the rest remain at risk

Most Read