LETTER: Oil must be refined before being put on tankers

Send your letters to vnc.editorial@blackpress.ca

Construction of the Trans Mountain Pipeline was completed in 1953. Few or no protests occurred during the construction phase nor during most of the 65 years it has been in operation. So why the protests that began when the company announced the proposed twinning of the existing pipeline?

RELATED: Regulator’s report, coming today, unlikely to settle Trans Mountain pipeline battle

The principal opposition today is not directed toward the pipeline as such, but rather the product proposed to be transported through the line (diluted bitumen, also referred to as dirty oil or dilbit). The salient issue, in my view, is the transferring of dilbit onto tanks moving through our coastal waterways and the irreparable damage that will result from the inevitable spills that will occur. Many coastal First Nations communities also rely on the Salish Seas as a food source.

So, is there a solution for bringing an end to these continuing protests? If the dilbit was refined prior to being loaded onto ocean going vessels, either at Fort McMurray or somewhere near the tanker loading docks, I suspect the protests would be significantly reduced or might even disappear.

RELATED: Court rejects B.C.’s request to declare Alberta oil export law unconstitutional

Some detractors with balk at the large capital costs associated with building a new refinery at either of the locations referred to above. The revenue generated from the sale of refined products is however far greater than that generated from the sale of dilbit and would, in the long run, pay for a significant part of the cost of constructing the refinery.

An added benefit would be the hundreds of jobs created during the construction phase and the long term employment generated for those employed in operating the completed facility.

For more than half a century refined oil has been transported via the Trans Mountain Pipeline without any significant environmental damage or protests.

RELATED: TIMELINE: Key dates in the history of the Trans Mountain pipeline

Could we not return to those peaceful days of the past?

Barry Mayhew

Victoria

Just Posted

The rock is no more for Oak Bay ‘Sea Lore’

Council calls for change to controversial location proposed for art installation

Juan de Fuca curlers ‘reeling’ after learning rink will be replaced with dry floor

West Shore Parks & Recreation board says curling rinks not getting enough use

Mary Winspear offers out-of-this-world evening with Chris Hadfield

Tickets on sale March 22 for Colonel Chris Hadfield visit May 7

Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Latest budget includes a sprinkling of money for voters across a wide spectrum

POLL: When do you think the next major earthquake will hit Vancouver Island?

According to seismologists, Vancouver Island is overdue for a magnitude 7 earthquake.… Continue reading

Facebook to overhaul ad targeting to prevent discrimination

The company is also paying about $5 million to cover plaintiffs’ legal fees and other costs

B.C. mosque part of open-house effort launched in wake of New Zealand shootings

The ‘Visit a Mosque’ campaign aims to combat Islamophobia

‘That’s a load of crap’: Dog poop conspiracy spreads in White Rock

Allegation picked up steam through a Facebook page run by a city councillor

Explosives unit brought in after suspicious boxes left at B.C. RCMP detachment

Nanaimo RCMP issues all clear after packages were found on lawn earlier in the day

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Newfoundland man caught after posting photo of himself drinking and driving

The 19-year-old took a photo of himself holding a beer bottle and cigarette while at the wheel

Carfentanil found in 15% of overdose deaths in January: B.C. coroner

Carfentanil is 100 times more powerful than illicit fentanyl and used to tranquilize elephants

Most Read