We kan’t let this Keystone Kompany kill our koast

Keystone XL pipeline will definitely be a path to our future - but what future?

As someone who essentially makes his living from the avails of advertising, I have to give  two thumbs up to the Enbridge effort. Sure, it has been called saccharine and propaganda and it has been booed in at least one theatre, but it’s a real gem in terms of truth in advertising, and I very much appreciate that.

It’s not a pipeline, it’s a path to our future.

Never a truer word was said.

What’s at stake here is not just a pipeline, it’s much, much bigger than that. What’s at stake is the future of this whole province and coast and the future of all the people and animals and plants and watersheds that  call it their home.

I guess the question has to be exactly what that future looks like.

The outlook at this point isn’t encouraging. A report released this week by U.S. National Transportation Safety Board chairwoman Deborah Hersman was withering in its critique of Enbridge’s handling of the 2010 oil spill in the Kalamazoo River in Michigan.

She didn’t pull any punches, calling the company’s actions akin to those of the Keystone Kops in their response to the spill. That sounds about right. It took 17 hours for the 840,000 gallons of heavy bitumen crude oil to spill into the river, a creek and nearby wetlands.

Klowns? Yup, but I would suggest one more akin to something out of a Stephen King novel than a Red Skelton or a Bozo.

That was just one spill, but there have been others.

Using data from Enbridge’s own reports, the Polaris Institute calculated that 804 spills occurred on Enbridge pipelines between 1999 and 2010, releasing about 168,645 barrels of hydrocarbons into the environment.

Now this same kompany wants to build this oh so aptly named Keystone XL pipeline from Alberta to the B.C. koast. I guess the XL stands for extra large — the Fatty Arbuckle of environmental screwups.

Now, the question is, what are we going to do about it? Our provincial government has  been entirely uninspiring and hasn’t even made a presentation as an intervenor. They haven’t taken a position on what is likely to be the biggest environmental issue in a generation. How infuriating is that?

There’s clearly no help coming from that quarter.

Meanwhile, our federal government is so enthusiastic about the idea that I couldn’t vouch for what would happen if that nude painting of Stephen Harper was in the room when the pipeline was being discussed.

Their so-called budget bill cut back on the Coast Guard and on environmental regulation just in time for the Enbridge debate. We can’t look for help there either.

Did I say Enbridge debate? For now maybe, but it looks like it’s time to mobilize. It’s an Enbridge fight they’re picking and if so, it’s up to us to ensure it’s an Enbridge fight they’re going to get.


After all, it’s not just a pipeline, it’s a path to our future.


Neil Horner is the associate editor of the Parksville Qualicum Beach News. He likes the Enbridge ad

Just Posted

The Arrowsmith Search and Rescue Society has outgrown its home at the Coombs-Hilliers Fire Department and will soon move to its new operations hall at the Qualicum Beach Airport. (PQB News file photo)
The Qualicum Beach Farmers Market is one of the organizations approved for a grant-in-aid by the Town of Qualicum Beach. (PQB News file photo)
COVID-19: Town of Qualicum Beach awards $80K in relief funds to community groups

Pandemic has put a financial strain on many organizations

The remains of the Mid-Island Co-op in Whiskey Creek along the Alberni Highway on Friday, June 18, after a blaze the day before devastated the gas station. (Michael Briones photo)
VIDEO: Whiskey Creek gas station destroyed by fire after camper van explosion

Nine fire departments responded to the incident, no injuries reported

Black Press file photo
RCMP seek suspect in Vancouver Island-wide crime spree

Crimes stretched from Deep Bay to Qualicum, Ladysmith, Chemainus and Youbou

Things are looking up for Vancouver Island as zero COVID-19 cases have been reported for the first time since October. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Island records zero new COVID-19 cases for the first time since October

For the first time since October, the province is reporting zero new… Continue reading

Marco Mendicino, Minister of Immigration, Refugees and Citizenship during a press conference in Ottawa on Thursday, May 13, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick
Canada to welcome 45,000 refugees this year, says immigration minister

Canada plans to increase persons admitted from 23,500 to 45,000 and expedite permanent residency applications

Emily Steele holds up a collage of her son, 16-year-old Elijah-Iain Beauregard who was stabbed and killed in June 2019, outside of Kelowna Law Courts on June 18. (Aaron Hemens/Capital News)
Kelowna woman who fatally stabbed teen facing up to 1.5 years of jail time

Her jail sentence would be followed by an additional one to 1.5 years of supervision

Cpl. Scott MacLeod and Police Service Dog Jago. Jago was killed in the line of duty on Thursday, June 17. (RCMP)
Abbotsford police, RCMP grieve 4-year-old service dog killed in line of duty

Jago killed by armed suspect during ‘high-risk’ incident in Alberta

The George Road wildfire near Lytton, B.C., has grown to 250 hectares. (BC Wildfire Service)
B.C. drone sighting halts helicopters fighting 250 hectares of wildfire

‘If a drone collides with firefighting aircraft the consequences could be deadly,’ says BC Wildfire Service

A dose of the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine is pictured at a vaccination site in Vancouver Thursday, March 11, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
NACI advice to mix vaccines gets varied reaction from AstraZeneca double-dosers

NACI recommends an mRNA vaccine for all Canadians receiving a second dose of a COVID-19 vaccine

A aerial view shows the debris going into Quesnel Lake caused by a tailings pond breach near the town of Likely, B.C., Tuesday, Aug. 5, 2014. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Updated tailings code after Mount Polley an improvement: B.C. mines auditor

British Columbia’s chief auditor of mines has found changes to the province’s requirements for tailings storage facilities

A North Vancouver man was arrested Friday and three police officers were injured after a 10-person broke out at English Bay on June 19, 2021. (Youtube/Screen grab)
Man arrested, 3 police injured during 10-person brawl at Vancouver beach

The arrest was captured on video by bystanders, many of whom heckled the officers as they struggled with the handcuffed man

Bruce Springsteen performs at the 13th annual Stand Up For Heroes benefit concert in support of the Bob Woodruff Foundation in New York on Nov. 4, 2019. (Greg Allen/Invision/AP)
Canadians who got AstraZeneca shot can now see ‘Springsteen on Broadway’

B.C. mayor David Screech who received his second AstraZeneca dose last week can now attend the show

Most Read