SMITHERS, B.C. – A new report by environmental group ForestEthics counters claims by Enbridge CEO, Patrick Daniel, that residents who oppose the Gateway pipeline are hypocrites because they use light switches and cook their food. Patrick made the comments to investors during Enbridge’s 2011 AGM in Calgary.
“Northern residents of BC are not hypocrites,” says Phil Brienesse, a candidate for Council in Smithers. “Residents can oppose projects that threaten our rivers, like the Enbridge pipeline, while also seeking more sustainable transportation options. There’s nothing wrong with that. The two go hand-in-hand.” The report looks at sustainable transportation options that could and are working in Northern communities like Smithers, Prince Rupert and Terrace. Case studies and profiles include car share programs, and municipal investments in active transportation, like bike routes.
"This report shows the individual commitments northern British Columbians are willing to make to be less reliant on fossil fuels for transportation,” says Jennifer Rice, a City Councillor candidate in Prince Rupert. “It’s time governments at all levels lead the way in providing solutions to reducing our carbon footprint on a broader scale.”
Critics of the Enbridge Gateway pipeline say it poses an extreme risk to local salmon-bearing rivers, and would make a major contribution to the climate change already devastating Northern BC communities in the form of Mountain Pine Beetle infestations and impacts on snow and water levels.
“Enbridge wants to keep us addicted to oil so that they can go on making profits at the expense of our communities and the environment. But many of us in rural areas are looking for solutions to reduce our use of oil,” says Nikki Skuce, Senior Energy Campaigner with ForestEthics. “We’re ready for leadership that builds community and leads us in the right direction.”
According to the report, oil companies received approximately $198 million from residents in the communities from Prince Rupert to Prince George in 2007.