Time to put our foot down

The bottom line when it comes to approval of the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway project isn’t whether an oil spill can be prevented...

The bottom line when it comes to approval of the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway project isn’t whether an oil spill can be prevented, but how much damage it will cause to our environment when there is one.

Because a spill is inevitable.

Whether it’s from a fault in the pipeline, neglectful maintenance, environmental wear and tear, or simply from the fact that the marine approaches to the coast of northern B.C. are more complex than Prince William Sound, where the Exxon Valdez hit Bligh Reef. With over 200 supertankers entering Kitimat annually to load over 300 million litres of diluted bitumen, the odds are stacked against Mother Nature on this one.

At one time, Canadian voters may have believed government promises and assurances that only the best and brightest would be monitoring the situation, but no more. For every promise our govenments make — both provincially and federally — we know they are also drafting contingency plans for when they inevitably break them.

Government promises are written on sheets of rice paper that dissolve upon a drop of spit. It’s almost laughable to read the provincial government wanting to put in place a “world-leading marine oil spill response, prevention and recovery system for B.C.’s coastline,” when the federal government is busy closing down nearby Coast Guard stations to save money.

Once the accountants get through with the approval process, our “world-leading marine oil spill response” will be an old fisherman named Bertie with a plastic bucket and spade.

We need to focus our energy and mental resources into transitioning off fossil fuels, not finding ways to suck the last vestiges from the bottom of the glass and spewing it across our coastlines.

The time to put our foot down is now.

Comedy for cancerA great lineup of music and comedy has been planned for next Tuesday’s (July 31) who-says-you-can’t-have-fun-while-supporting-cancer-research Comedy For Cancer event being hosted by Monday at Club9ONE9 in the Stratchcona Hotel. The doors open at 6:30 p.m., with the evening kicking off in style at 7:30 p.m. to the comedy stylings of MC Jason Lamb. By twisting their arms and producing blackmail photos asking nicely, we managed to convince four local comic geniuses and four musical prodigies to donate their talent and time for a fun evening that just happens to benefit this year’s Cops for Cancer Tour de Rock event, featuring Black Press’s skinny entrant, Kyle Slavin. Call 250-480-3254 to book your tickets today or pick up at the Strathcona Hotal — $20 in advance, $25 at the door.  M

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