BY RICHARD GILBERT - The citizens of Kitimat B.C. recently voted against The Northern Gateway Project in a non-binding plebiscite.
About 58 per cent voted against it and about 42 per cent voted in favour.
In total, 3,071 residents or 62 per cent of eligible voters weighed in.
“This shows what happens when you actually give people the chance to vote on Enbridge’s proposal,” said Kai Nagata, energy & democracy director at the Dogwood Initiative.
The Joint Review Panel (JRP) for the project released a report in December 2013 that found the pipeline’s construction would have significant adverse environmental effects.
However, it found these adverse effects were outweighed by the benefits.
The District of Kitimat released the official results from the non-binding plebiscite on the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project on April 14.
Residents were asked the following question:
“Do you support the final report recommendations of the Joint Review Panel (JRP) of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency and National Energy Board, that the Enbridge Northern Gateway project be approved, subject to 209 conditions set out in Volume 2 of the JRP’s final report.”
In response to the No vote, Dogwood Initiative is exploring the option of launching an initiative petition under the Recall and Initiative Act, if the federal and provincial governments approve the project.
The Recall and Initiative Act allows any British Columbian to bring a matter of provincial jurisdiction forward for a vote, provided they collect supporting signatures from 10 per cent of registered voters in every riding in the province.
Enbridge’s $6.4 billion Northern Gateway Pipeline project is 1,200-kilometre pipeline that would transport 525,000 barrels a day from Alberta’s oilsands to a marine terminal on the British Columbia coast for export to Asia.
Information about the Northern Gateway project, as well as details of the JRP report, are available from Enbridge at www.gatewayfacts.ca.