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Media Statement: Monday March 21, 2016
B.C. Green Party Leader Andrew Weaver Reacts to Woodfibre LNG Approval and PNW LNG

For immediate release

VICTORIA B.C. – Andrew Weaver, Leader of the B.C. Green Party and MLA for Oak Bay–Gordon Head, has issued the following statement in response to the federal government’s request for more information from PNW LNG and the approval of the environmental assessment for Woodfibre LNG:

On Pacific Northwest LNG:

“I am deeply alarmed at BC’s Minister of Natural Gas’s comments that a properly functioning environmental assessment process constitutes a ‘needless delay’,” said Andrew Weaver. “The BC Liberal’s reckless BC LNG economics and environment of ‘getting to yes’ no matter what, calls into question whether the environmental assessment process under the BC Liberals is indeed credible.”

“There are a growing number of examples where an environmental process seems to be more about ticking boxes than about reviewing impacts. A process whose purpose is to evaluate whether a project should proceed will struggle to remain credible when the government is frantic to say yes to everything.”

“An LNG export industry is a financially foolish venture for a Province like B.C. to be pursuing, especially with other options readily available. The BC Liberals refuse to recognize that the future of the BC economy is not rooted in the energy projects of the past, but in environmental tourism, clean-tech and knowledge-tech industries.”

On Woodfibre LNG:

“It is incredibly unfortunate that the Woodfibre LNG proposal was examined through the lens of Harper’s Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012. This act gutted the existing environmental assessment process,” said Andrew Weaver. “Given that the federal assessment was substituted in favour of a BC assessment under the Harper administration, I am concerned that the review that took place did not ensure that environmental impacts were appropriately accounted for and mitigated.”

“This is the wrong project, in the wrong place, at the wrong time. It will hurt our climate leadership, it lacks a strong economic case, and it has received no social licence for what is being pushed forward. The community has not given its permission.”

“I think it is essential that we follow the position that Prime Minister Trudeau himself established that while ‘government’s grant permits, only communities grant permission’. We look forward to working with the federal government to quickly update and implement the environmental review processes they are using.”

“At the end of the day however, it is the BC Liberal government that is pushing for LNG in BC, and they hold ultimate responsibility for the lack of social license for this project and for an inadequate environmental assessment process.”

Neither Woodfibre LNG nor PNW LNG have made a Final Investment Decision (FID).

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Media contact
Mat Wright, Press Secretary
Office of Andrew Weaver, MLA
1-250-216-3382
mat.wright@leg.bc.ca

10 Comments

  1. Matthew Helliwell-Reply
    March 26, 2016 at 12:53 pm

    I do wish you didn’t refuse to say anything bad about the Federal Liberals… I know they are good friends of yours but come on… they approve Woodfibre and you blame Harper and Clark?

    If Woodfibre is the bad project you say it is, call out those who approved it, even if they have a soft spot in your heart.

    • March 26, 2016 at 1:15 pm

      Hello Matthew, It has not been approved yet. There are many hurdles to go. All that was done is the CEAA 2012 review process was completed. There is not gas line; there are DFO and Transport Canada steps and the market for LNG has tanked. At this stage I am very impressed with the action of the Federal Liberals on the PNG initiative in Prince Rupert. I will reserve judgement on their dealings with Woodfibre.

  2. Marjorie Carothers-Reply
    March 25, 2016 at 11:31 am

    No LNG what good is it if we are all dead from contaminating the environment.

  3. Norah Creina Moorhead-Reply
    March 22, 2016 at 9:33 am

    There are many reasons why this LNG proposal should not be implemented. Marine traffic concerns. Worst case scenarios for ships loosing power, collisions, groundings etc. Marine ecology concerns, killing off life forms. Tourist industry, eye sore, loss of business for small businesses connected to outdoor experiences.. Quality of life for Squamish residents, pumping facility above Valley Cliff houses.Fugitive methane leaks. Upstream carbon emissions from fracking etc. Not the economic/ job bonanza that the government believes.

    • Arthur Green-Reply
      March 22, 2016 at 11:15 pm

      It was the Federal Government Environment Ministry that also gave them the go ahead on this project.

  4. Ruth Simons-Reply
    March 21, 2016 at 10:47 pm

    Thank you for this statement. Our Society and the communities around Howe Sound have been asking the Provincial Government for a comprehensive land and marine use plan for the Howe Sound Region. With the province’s plans for this LNG export facility, ongoing logging and a possible gravel mine that will impact a thriving estuary, the need for a sustainable plan is urgent. Howe Sound is a pilot project for Cumulative Effects Assessment but this will be too little too late. We appreciate your help to ensure Howe Sound’s recovering ecosystem and natural capital is protected for current and future generations. Please urge the Minister of Mines to stop the proposed Burnco Gravel Mine in Howe Sound that had already been turned down more than once in the past by DFO. This land is zoned rural and there is no support for Howe Sound to be further industrialized. Thank you.

    • March 21, 2016 at 10:58 pm

      Ruth, I agree, the reckless approach taken by the BC Liberals ignores the desperate need for more thorough land and marine planning that recognizes the importance of cumulative impacts and the values of area residents. Squamish has recently branded itself as “Hardwired for Adventure”. I’m not sure the Woodfibre LNG facility is consistent with that. Even the name “Squamish” meaning Mother of the Wind” and “people of the sacred water” seems rather at odds with the proposal.

  5. Edna Thomson-Reply
    March 21, 2016 at 9:21 pm

    As shown above.

    Please confirm receipt.

  6. Edna Thomson-Reply
    March 21, 2016 at 9:17 pm

    Dear Mr. Weaver,

    Your incredibly astute Media response to the seemingly hysterically attempted implementation, without adequate assessment, of both a PNW LNG operation, and an LNG proposal on the Woodfibre site to be operating in the waters of beautiful Howe Sound, is the voice of sanity. Your statements ring out above the me-lay restoring faith in honesty in political representation that meets the legal requirement of public contract, and they are so very gratefully appreciated. Thank you.

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