Enbridge shows no integrity in Line 9 preparation, Waterloo Regional Council asked to defend region from risks of dilbit in aging, cracked line.
Wednesday September 17th, 7:00pm - Region of Waterloo building, 150 Frederick St., Kitchener -
Media Contact: Dan Kellar - 519-616-4462
KITCHENER--As the National Energy Board is quietly allowing Enbridge to start operating its controversial Line 9 pipeline, the Waterloo Regional Council is being asked to take measures locally to defend the region from a spill. At this evening’s council meeting, the Waterloo Region Coalition Against Line 9 will present an update on pressing concerns regarding the pipeline, and request that the Council adopt a ban on the transport of diluted bitumen through the region.
Line 9 was approved by the NEB despite widespread opposition and interventions at the hearings, and without even mandating the conditions requested by many parties, including those outlined in a statement from the Waterloo Regional Council. Last week, the NEB began issuing leave-to-open permits for the pipeline, after allowing Enbridge to abandon certain remaining repair work.
Additionally, these permits are being granted despite active legal challenges to the Line 9 project. Chippewas of the Thames First Nation is pursuing an appeal based on the fact that they were not consulted, as is required, in the approval process. Enbridge has also neglected to resolve ongoing issues regarding lack of consultation in other Indigenous communities, including Six Nations. In July, work on the Line 9 project adjacent to the Grand River was stopped by members of the Haudenosaunee Mens Fire and other Indigenous and settler allies.
In speaking to council, Coalition representative Dan Kellar will note that “by allowing Enbridge to simply walk away from their conditions when they are faced with the need to consult, the NEB is continuing to champion environmentally damaging resource projects that perpetuate colonial injustices and ignore our treaty responsibilities.”
While these issues may seem to rest at federal and corporate levels, the Coalition assures that they are pertinent locally, stating that the Region is complicit in these processes, most directly as they occur within the Haldimand Tract (Six Nations territory), if they stand aside.
Numerous other cities and municipalities have taken a stand against the risks posed by Line 9 and the tar sands bitumen and volatile fracked oil it would bring through their communities. Recently, Toronto City Council moved to request that diluted bitumen not be transported through the city. Eight municipalities have called for the province to undertake an environmental assessment, which has not been conducted for the project. Just last week, Montreal mayor and head of the Montreal Metropolitan Community, Denis Coderre, also voiced serious concern about the NEB’s lax process after the leave-to-open was granted while the conditions have not even been met.
Enbridge recently stated that their commitment to safety has not changed, a statement that, the Coalition argues, should be cause for concern. “Their commitment to safety has left in its wake billions of litres of spilled oil, devastated rivers, and shattered communities.” Kellar concluded, “We urge the Waterloo Regional Council to protect the Grand River watershed and to stand in the way of the colonisation wrought through the Line 9 project.”