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Dying of Politics in a River Near You

Dying of Politics in a River Near You

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look what I got… ready or not?

Good morning.
I’m writing a story for the Financial Post on the likely impact of upcoming LNG projects on the economies and communities of Delta and Squamish. Here’s a summary of the projects, all proposed for start up in 2017:
  1. FortisBC’s C$400 million investment in a second terminal of one billion cubic feet capacity at its Tilbury, Delta site. The expanded plant will have a total of 1.6 bcf of capacity, mostly for export. FortisBC has signed a 15-year contract to export the LNG production to Hawaii starting 2017.
  2. Califorina-based WesPac Midstream’s 3-million-t/y export terminal, also at Tilbury, sited next to the FortisBC plant. Company has not given an investment figure. The combined FortisBC-WesPac facilities will increase vessel traffic along the Fraser River.
  3. Woodfibre LNG at Squamish. $1.7 billion export plant of capacity 2.1 million tonnes/year. Sales MOU signed for half the capacity, to China.
As you’re running for a seat on Squamish District’s council, I’d like to get your views on the following:
1. Would you describe the Woodfibre LNG project as one of the biggest issues, if not the biggest, facing Squamish today? How much of an issue is it in the upcoming municipal elections? What are the other issues?
2. Are you for or against the LNG project? Why?
3. The WLNG Community Committee has made some interim conclusions and concerns about the project. If you were elected to council, how would you deal with these conclusions and concerns from your position as a proponent or opponent of the project?
4. Interestingly, I’ve noted the contrasting responses of citizens and environmental groups in Squamish and Delta. In Squamish, LNG with the attendant concerns over fracking, health and safety issues are getting a lot of debate and media attention. On the other hand, there’s little mention of LNG issues in Delta. Green groups have been able to rally citizens in Squamish, but have met with indifference in Delta. Why do you think this is so?
5. Politically, how would you describe your platform: conservative, liberal or middle?
As reference, please find below my article (that you’re probably aware of) on the Squamish LNG project for the Georgia Straight in March this year.
I look forward to your comments.
Thank you,
Weng

Singapore’s Pacific Oil & Gas boosts Woodfibre LNG project in Squamish

A low-key 11-year-old Singapore firm has emerged as the surprise leader in a crowded field of established global giants racing to export liquefied natural gas (LNG) from B.C. to Asia.

While the likes of Chevron, Shell, BG, ExxonMobil, CNOOC, and PETRONAS dominate the headlines, Pacific Oil & Gas is quietly on course to make the all-important final investment decision (FID) to sanction construction of its LNG project in southern B.C.’s Squamish district. Its planned first-quarter 2017 start-up puts it ahead of the dozen or so competing projects, all located near the northern B.C. ports of Prince Rupert and Kitimat.

In an interview in Singapore, president Ratnesh Bedi told the Georgia Straight that he expects the company’s Canadian subsidiary, Woodfibre LNG Export Pte. Ltd., to meet its “soft” FID target for the $1.7-billion project by the fall of 2014.

Pacific Oil & Gas only came into reckoning in early 2013, when it acquired an abandoned pulp mill 75 kilometres north of Vancouver as the unlikely site for its pioneering cross-Pacific venture. Licensed to export a small annual volume of 2.1 million tonnes of LNG, the project is undergoing community-consultation and environmental-approval processes as well as further technical studies by B.C. energy-utility firm FortisBC.

A soft FID alone will likely inject the first wave of hundreds of millions of dollars into the local economy.

“We will be making down payments for equipment worth hundreds of millions of dollars…[accompanied by] some manpower hiring,” Bedi said.

A “hard” FID would give the green light to full-scale financing and construction and turn Squamish into a gas-trading hub located between Vancouver and Whistler. The 123-kilometre-long corridor connecting the three cities could emerge as an important growth centre for the province, with its future increasingly tied to the rising economies across the Pacific Ocean.

The B.C. government needs this first project to prove its LNG strategy, which Premier Christy Clark says will add $1 trillion to the provincial economy, create 100,000 jobs, and eliminate its estimated $60-billion debt. Voters bought her LNG vision in reelecting her government last May.

Although some Canadians reject (because of environmental concerns) a shale-gas-based economic boom and the Clark government has likely overstated LNG’s promise, there is little doubt that the Woodfibre project has quiet but strong local support.

The Squamish economy touched a low point in 2006 when Western Forest Products closed the mill at Woodfibre. The site remained idle until an unknown company from half the planet away acquired it for $25.5 million in early 2013 with an outrageous idea to turn it into an LNG-export plant.

“I think that there are some real positives for Squamish,” Mayor Rob Kirkham said by phone on March 3, citing creation of local jobs for a district where many families have a member who must travel long distances to work.

Kirkham also said the project would bring the opportunity to clean up a contaminated site and furnish tax income for a community now overly dependent on private homeowners. “It would be put in use for what it is zoned for [industrial], and it would generate tax revenue for the district.” (When it shut down, the mill was contributing about $2 million annually in property taxes to the municipality.)

As well, the mayor added, “It would be an opportunity to get some [local] skills training.”

To be sure, the project must still clear provincial and federal environmental approvals that could take up to 18 months to achieve, Bedi said in his 50th-floor office overlooking Singapore’s financial district.

At the company’s community meetings with aboriginal, environmental, residential, and business groups, local groups have voiced concerns about issues like pollution, emissions, taxation, and shipping traffic.

“While there are no guarantees in any environmental-assessment process, we are confident that the certificates will be received with necessary conditions to ensure proper protection of the local environment,” Bedi said. “Once that is complete, FortisBC will begin construction.”

In preparation for the project’s launch, Woodfibre LNG has hired Anthony Gelotti—whose 30-plus years in the industry include experience with Shell and Chevron—as its president and expects to double its staff size to 30 by the end of this year.

In an industry notorious for delays and cancellations, the Woodfibre LNG project has progressed rapidly on account of three factors.

While its rivals are owned by consortia of shareholders and partners with differing views and risk profiles, Pacific Oil & Gas is controlled by one person: Indonesian tycoon Sukanto Tanoto.

Secondly, shareholders in the other LNG projects are increasingly worried about rising costs, shifting corporate priorities, tax issues, and the province’s infrastructure and skills deficits.

Most carry a hefty price tag of more than $10 billion, with the latest proposal by CNOOC’s Nexen expected to exceed $20 billion. Shell’s new cost-cutting CEO is taking a second look at its proposed joint $12-billion to $15-billion investment in a Kitimat plant with three Asian partners.

The U.K.’s BG Group is two years from making an FID on its estimated $11-billion project, near Prince Rupert, that will be tied to plans by its joint venture with Canada’s Spectra Energy to build a gas pipeline. Malaysia’s PETRONAS, having sold off a combined 38-percent stake to partners from Japan, Brunei, and India, wants to further pare down its shareholding in the Pacific Northwest LNG project, which includes the construction of a $9-billion to $11-billion plant near Prince Rupert by 2018.

And a Chevron-Apache venture is also aiming to start up its Kitimat plant sometime between 2018 and 2020.

Woodfibre’s single-minded focus on building a relatively small plant has helped speed up its decision-making to choosing between a floating and a land-based terminal.

“Around the time of the soft FID, we anticipate to have made a decision on [either] a floating or a land-based LNG,” Bedi revealed. “The technical study will be due in October 2014.”

Meanwhile, the other projects’ shareholders must compete for access to huge reserves of natural gas and pipeline capacity, long-term contracts with Asian customers opposed to paying high prices, and contractors and skilled labour in population-scarce northern B.C.

Thirdly, Woodfibre’s biggest advantage is perhaps Tanoto’s decision to launch its project from a decades-old 86-hectare industrial site that the other players probably overlooked. It came with an established pipeline system, electricity and gas supplies, and a sheltered port that can all be converted, upgraded, and expanded to handle LNG. Its proximity to Vancouver and Whistler is a bonus for attracting workers.

After buying the site, the Vancouver-based company commissioned FortisBC to study the expansion of the existing 600-kilometre pipeline network serving the plant. Completed last December, the study supported the construction of a 52-kilometre pipeline to carry an additional 220 million standard cubic feet per day of natural gas, all for export. This could mean up to 40 annual tanker shipments, sufficient to support the project’s viability but small enough not to strain the reserves and supplies of producers already linked to the main pipeline.

The B.C. government probably had the Woodfibre project in mind when its latest budget announcement revealed that it expects only one plant to be built by 2017.

With an eye on this year’s Chinese zodiac symbol, the premier will be desperate for the Woodfibre dark horse to quickly cross the FID line and, hopefully, launch the province’s LNG era.

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Debra McBride: 2014 Municipal Election for Councillor

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My purpose: To Feed The World
My family farm experience is a source of strength and guidance for me.  The family pulp and paper mill workers provided an early view of industrial destruction of our life giving planet, earth.  As a teenager I enjoyed life in Victoria BC and was mentored by the founders of the health food industry at Viteway Bakery.  My arrival in Squamish in 1977 with 4 dogs 3 cats and a sprouting business was received with interest.  By 1982 I was in the Municipal race for Mayor on the grounds that the estuary plans were destructive. This battle continues today so I am in this election in 2014 to promote Jobs; in non-polluting industry, Transportation; that will be enjoyable, convenient and accessible for workers and visitors, Daycare; to ensure workers and families get the help needed, and a Communication Network; to facilitate Emergency Planning for those in distress.
Our life giving scenery has provided me with work in the film industry.  Recently my interest in the health benefits of teas is now realized as I am an Independent Tea Consultant with Steeped Tea.  I have been most successful creating projects for myself to work on as a volunteer.
Mountain FM benefited from my note taking at D O S Council meetings, the Brackendale Art Gallery found me useful for cooking and cleaning, the Sea to Sky FreeNet Society eventually employed me for computer tutoring and since 2008 the Downtown Squamish Business Improvement Association has kept me busy with networking and event photography.  Luckily I was able to attend the Academy of Learning and found I can attain an honours level in all subjects.
I find that people come to Squamish to have fun.  They might need to stay awhile, but have their home bases elsewhere. This allows us to provide temporary accommodation and spare the estuary and ourselves from a population impact for which we are not prepared.
In 30 years the estuary has been able to recover from pollution as many companies left town and left nature to cover and to recover the damaged areas.  We now have the most terrifying, close-up whale watching ever and of course the most delicate balance of life in this our nursery for nature.  Close encounters with wildlife inspire me while I persist in opposing Squamish Council and their plans for expansion which will steal our million dollar views and eliminate the growing businesses which rely on preserving the views, the estuary and our watershed.
To be effective is to have a vote when Squamish Council votes.  I am asking for your vote to elect me, Deb McBride to Squamish Council.  For decades I have witnessed the futility of gathering hundreds of people to oppose Official Community Plan Amendments at Public Hearings. At present I speak at Public Hearings and I represent over 300 voters.  It would be best to have enough voters trust me and elect me to Squamish Council to represent them when the decisions are made.
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Dr. David SUZUKI says SIGN UP TO KEEP WILD SALMON!

GMO salmon, European salmon viruses, wild salmon stocks collapsing — what the hell is it going to take for BC’s politicians to realize this must be stopped.

I’m 77, and as someone who has fought companies and governments for decades to protect the environment, I know a chance to save a piece of this planet when I see it, and I see a huge opportunity right now to save BC’s wild salmon.

There is an election happening right now in British Columbia and politicians are finally talking about what they will do now to take on open net salmon farms — but most of their promises fall far short of the real solution: getting the salmon farms out of the Pacific.

Alexandra Morton, a biologist who has been heroically fighting this battle for years, started a petition on Change.org demanding that all party leaders commit to banning open net pens for salmon in BC’s waters. Click here to join me in supporting Alexandra’s petition.

Open net salmon farms are a number one threat to wild salmon. Not only are they farming carnivores that eat more fish than they produce, but the farms treat the Pacific like a sewer, spewing antibiotics and parasites in the water. And these feedlots pour viruses into the ocean to infect wild populations and threaten their survival.

Why do I know we can win this time? The petition already has over 50,000 signatures! The government’s own reports have said this action is needed, one party has already committed to revoking the salmon farm leases and all of the parties are desperate for votes.

Alexandra will keep you posted so that you can tell everyone who lives in BC which parties have the strongest positions on this critical issue before everyone goes to the polls. This is how we are going to win, but this only works if you and all of your friends join the campaign.

Sincerely yours,

David Suzuki

This petition will be delivered to:

Leader of BC NDP  
NDP Leader Adrian Dix
USELESS WHEN IT COMES TO PROTECTING WILD SALMON!

Leader of the BC Green Party  

Green Party Leader Jane Sterk

THE GREEN PARTY IS THE ONLY PARTY SWORN TO PROTECT WILD SALMON!

Leader of BC Liberal Party 
Liberal Party Leader Christy Clark
THE LIBERALS HAVE ISSUED AND EXTENDED MORE SALMON SEA-FARM LEASES

 

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SALMON CONFIDENTIAL now showing…

Hello,

The fight to save wild salmon from salmon feedlots just went to the next level!
 

Mercola, the world’s #1 natural health website  just posted our bio-political documentary Salmon Confidential!  Over 10,000 more people have viewed the film in just a few hours for a total of over 90,000 views since it was released a few weeks ago.

I am touring Salmon Confidential through BC, 18 screenings in 20 days you can see the schedule here.   The showings are sparking very animated dialogue afterwards. So many people are fed up and are now taking action, visiting their supermarkets, talking to their BC candidates, signing the boycott and change.org petition.  Finally, people understand they are going to have to step up in large numbers if we are going to protect wild salmon from salmon feedlot disease. Thank you!

Highlights of the tour include the evening with the brilliant Elizabeth May Canada’s first Green Party Member of Parliament, April 20 in Sidney BC (entry by donation) and David Suzuki on April 18 in Vancouverbuy tickets.

 
Today’s blog All Bark and Bite is on the economy of salmon feedlots vs the wild salmon economy. Not only do we get the poop end of this deal, Canadian tax payers are paying to compensate the fish farmers for the disease outbreaks they are creating and you can be eating virus infected salmon when you buy BC farm salmon. Many consider this unwholesome.

The Province of BC has the power to revoke the licences of occupation of all the salmon feedlots on key wild salmon migration routes if it is in the public interest. This industry is 98% Norwegian-owned it is in Norway’s interest. Wild salmon are in Canadian’s interest.  Read my blog, examine the economics, contact the leaders of the BC political parties and tell them it is time (emails at bottom of blog page).  There is no reason to continue this madness.  It is time for BC politicians to serve the people and this tremendous resource. Transition the few workers in the salmon feedlot industry to something less damaging and lets move forward with bringing wild salmon and the economy of BC back into the pink!

Wild salmon need us right now.  They need to stop breathing in salmon feedlot sewage as they try to swim to sea.
 
Thank you all who have stepped up!
 

Alexandra Morton

Posted in Uncategorized

SALMON CONFIDENTIAL now showing…

Hello,

The fight to save wild salmon from salmon feedlots just went to the next level!
 

Mercola, the world’s #1 natural health website  just posted our bio-political documentary Salmon Confidential!  Over 10,000 more people have viewed the film in just a few hours for a total of over 90,000 views since it was released a few weeks ago.

I am touring Salmon Confidential through BC, 18 screenings in 20 days you can see the schedule here.   The showings are sparking very animated dialogue afterwards. So many people are fed up and are now taking action, visiting their supermarkets, talking to their BC candidates, signing the boycott and change.org petition.  Finally, people understand they are going to have to step up in large numbers if we are going to protect wild salmon from salmon feedlot disease. Thank you!

Highlights of the tour include the evening with the brilliant Elizabeth May Canada’s first Green Party Member of Parliament, April 20 in Sidney BC (entry by donation) and David Suzuki on April 18 in Vancouverbuy tickets.

 
Today’s blog All Bark and Bite is on the economy of salmon feedlots vs the wild salmon economy. Not only do we get the poop end of this deal, Canadian tax payers are paying to compensate the fish farmers for the disease outbreaks they are creating and you can be eating virus infected salmon when you buy BC farm salmon. Many consider this unwholesome.

The Province of BC has the power to revoke the licences of occupation of all the salmon feedlots on key wild salmon migration routes if it is in the public interest. This industry is 98% Norwegian-owned it is in Norway’s interest. Wild salmon are in Canadian’s interest.  Read my blog, examine the economics, contact the leaders of the BC political parties and tell them it is time (emails at bottom of blog page).  There is no reason to continue this madness.  It is time for BC politicians to serve the people and this tremendous resource. Transition the few workers in the salmon feedlot industry to something less damaging and lets move forward with bringing wild salmon and the economy of BC back into the pink!

Wild salmon need us right now.  They need to stop breathing in salmon feedlot sewage as they try to swim to sea.
 
Thank you all who have stepped up!
 

Alexandra Morton

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SALMON CONFIDENTIAL ON TOUR IN SQUAMISH AT QUEST APRIL 21 at 7:30!

I’m on Facebook Group:  Salmon Are Sacred and am deb.mcbride.754

HERE’S THE TOUR INFO FOR SALMON CONFIDENTIAL PROVINCE WIDE WITH ALEXANDRA MORTON

APRIL 18 VANCOUVER  QUEST UNIVERSITY SQUAMISH BC
APRIL 21st at 7:30!
SALMON CONFIDENTIAL
WILL BE SHOWN!
HERE’S THE TOUR INFO!  DAVID SUZUKI JOINS TOUR IN VANCOUVER APRIL 18th!
Two of Canada’s most progressive scientific minds,  Dr. David Suzuki & Alexandra Morton, are teaming up on April 18th to present & discuss the documentary Salmon Confidential. Following the hour-long film, the two scientists will engage the audience on the multitude of issues around the diseases the salmon farming industry may be spreading to our wild salmon, the implications, our food supply and what this issue is costing our economy. Suzuki & Morton will also explore the opportunity B.C. has to bring back the wild salmon economy.

Click here to buy tickets $10. 
salmonconfidential.ca/morton-suzuki-in-vancouver
Elizabeth May, Jane Sterk join Morton in Sidney on April20th
On April 20 in Sidney Elizabeth May, Jane Sterk and Dr. Alexandra Morton will present Salmon Confidential. The film will be a launch pad for a lively discussion about salmon, economy, politics, science, and this upcoming election.

So far the Green Party is so the only party that has responded to the mounting scientific evidence of the harm the salmon farming industry is having on the valuable wild salmon economy of BC with a policy of removing the salmon farms from wild salmon migration routes

Click here for more info:
salmonconfidential.ca/elizabeth-may-jane-sterk-morton-in-sidney
Locations of Upcoming Events

Each screening will be followed by a discussion with Alex and/or Twyla about the issue, the politics, the science, how people can get involved in testing their own fish, and what we can do to bring back the wild salmon economy. Admission is by donation. Check here for updated schedules and new bookings: salmonaresacred.org/calendar .

April 9, Courtenay,7 pm at the Stan Hagen Theatre, North Island College with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 10, Sooke, 7pm at the Edward Milne Community School Theatre 6218 Sooke Rd, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 11, Victoria, 6:30 pm at Camosun College Landsdowne Campus in the Fisher building room 100, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 12, Cowichan, 6:45pm at the Cowichan Estuary Nature Centre, Hecate Park, 1845 Cowichan Bay Road, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 14, Lasqueti Island, 7pm at the Arts Center, with Twyla & Alex

April 15, Nanaimo, 7pm at Vancouver Island University Drama & Theatre Building, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 16, Qualicum, 7pm at 747 Jones Street, Qualicum Beach Civic Centre, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 17, Tofino, 7:30pm at the Clayoquot Sound Community Theatre, 380 Campbell Street, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 18, Vancouver, 7pm at the Stanley Theatre, 2750 Granville St with David Suzuki & Alexandra Morton. Buy tickets here:
http://www.salmonconfidential.ca/morton-suzuki-in-vancouver/

April 19, Nanoose, 7pm, Nanoose Place Hall, 2925 North West Bay Rd, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 20, Sidney, 6:30 pm, at the Mary Winspear Centre BC in the Charlie White Theatre 2242 Beacon Ave, with Elizabeth May, Jane Sterk and Dr. Alexandra Morton. More info here:
http://www.salmonconfidential.ca/elizabeth-may-jane-sterk-morton-in-sidney/

April 21, Squamish, 7:30pm, at Quest University, 3200 University Blvd, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 22, Campbell River, 7pm, at the Campbell River Timberline Theatre 1681 S. Dogwood Street, with Alexandra Morton and filmmaker Twyla Roscovich. Details here:

April 23, Victoria,7pm & 9pm at At Cinecenta Theatre, 3800 Finnerty Rd at UVIC double showing at 7pm and 9pm with Alexandra Morton, filmmaker Twyla Roscovich & Raincoast Conservation Society,

April 24,Vancouver, 6:30pm at the Mobius Cafe & Tea Shop,4125 Main St with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 25, Ladner, 6pm at the Ladner Recreations Centre 4734 51st Street, with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 28, Salmon Arm, 7pm Salmar Classic Theatre, with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 29, Celista, 7pm at the North Shuswap Community Hall, with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

April 30, Kamloops, 7pm at the Clocktower Theatre at the Thompson Rivers University, 900 McGill Rd, Kamloops Campus, with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

May 1, Kelowna, 7pm at the Okanagon College Theatre, 1000 KLO Rd, with filmmaker Twyla Roscovich

May 5, Port Moody, 6:30 pm at the Port Moody Inlet Theatre 100 Newport Dr

To Organize a showing in your community click here: salmonconfidential.ca/organize-a-showing-in-your-community

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