A planned spill response base in Port Alberni is on hold. (WCMRC)

B.C. cities push for spill response base despite Trans Mountain decision

UBCM delegates voted to ask the province to continue building bases

Port Alberni council got the support of their peers last week, as their fellow mayors and councillors voted to ask the province to go ahead with a spill response that had been halted along with Trans Mountain.

Delegates at the annual Union of B.C. Municipalities convention in Whistler voted Friday morning to ask the province to continue the spill response measures put in limbo after the federal appeals court struck down the pipeline.

Coun. Chris Alemany, who brought the resolution forward, said that federal ownership of Trans Mountain meant that it was government, not industry, who needed to pay for the spill response.

“Now that the federal government is an owner of the pipeline, the federal government has a responsibility to guarantee a response base, whether the pipeline happens or not,” said Alemany following the convention.

READ MORE: B.C. spill response plans in limbo after Trans Mountain decision

Initially, a $150 million spill response had been made a condition of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion by the National Energy Board,

The money was to be collected by Western Canada Marine Response Corp. from an impending toll on the expanded pipeline.

The corporation is an industry-funded organization tasked with responding to and cleaning up spills along B.C.’s coast.

So far, WCMRC has spent 13 per cent of the planned $150 million spill response.

But those plans were put on hold, WCMRC communications director Michael Lowry told Black Press Media earlier this month.

When the pipeline approval was struck down in early September, Lowry said that spill response plans were being put on hold.

Those plans included six bases – Vancouver Harbour, near Annacis Island in the Fraser River, in Nanaimo, the Saanich Peninsula, Beecher Bay near Sooke and in Port Alberni.

WCMRC has already signed a 25-year lease for the Port Alberni base, located near Harbour Quay.

“The spill response bases are going to be a huge economic driver on the Island and on the coast,” Alemany said.

“They represent a significant number of jobs.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Pets still missing after Peachland home fire

Two Pomeranians and two cats are missing after fire

Okanagan-Shuswap weather: A sunny Easter Sunday

Temperatures will peak at approximately 20C region-wide

Petition to stop new cell tower too close to Kelowna homes

An online petition was started to stop cell tower construction near Ellison Elementary School

Local Kelowna project tabs restaurant workers for industry fundraiser

The 2nd Hungry Games invites fundraises for local charities

‘No answers:’ Canadians react to Sri Lanka bombings that killed hundreds

The co-ordinated bomb attacks killed at least 207 people and injured 450 more on Easter Sunday

Regional district backs more consultation on plans to help caribou

It is feared that the caribou recovery plans could result in closure of backcountry areas

Okanagan student shows skill at provincial finals

Aidan Eglin of Armstrong won website development event at Skills Canada’s B.C. finals in Abbotsford

Kootnekoff: Easter Bunny legal woes

Several years ago, our young daughter needed to know: “Is Santa Claus… Continue reading

Okanagan fire department rescues kittens

Enderby homeowner not aware cats were in wood pile in yard near garbage pile fire that got away

Okanagan township’s open burning winds down

Spallumcheen reminds residents of regulation changes as open burning concludes April 30

Children gather for Easter festival in Summerland

Fourth annual Easter Egg-stravaganza included activities and egg hunt

QUIZ: How much do you know about Easter?

Take this short quiz and put your knowledge to the test

Most Read