Kamloops reaction to NEB endorsement of pipeline expansion

By Jill Sperling
February 22, 2019 - 5:08pm

KAMLOOPS — In Kamloops, reaction to the National Energy Board's endorsement of the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion is mixed. 

Local environmentalist Tony Brummel says he believes opposition to the pipeline will only grow with the conditional endorsement, expecting the decision to end up in Supreme Court due to possible impacts to marine life and the environment. 

While disappointed, Brummel says he fully expected the NEB to endorse the pipeline expansion. 

"Who's suprised? We knew, quite frankly, that the fix was in right from the start," Brummel said. "The Trudeau Liberals don't care about UNDRIP (United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples), they don't care about reconciliation, or even truth when it comes to that point. As far as the things like the orca and the salmon, and the Salish Sea he's willing to risk it all and that's pretty disturbing to me and my confreres." 

City Councillor Mike O'Reilly has a different take on the endorsement. 

Concerned about hazardous materials being transported by rail through Kamloops neighbourhoods, he says the pipeline expansion is a safer alternative, and one that will benefit the city of Kamloops. 

"For the City of Kamloops if the pipeline were to expand it means hundreds of jobs and almost a doubling of tax revenue that would start coming in once the pipeline is operational," O'Reilly said. "What my biggest concern is, is the $3.4 billion investment that the Alberta government made two days ago to by 4,400 new oil rail cars and they will be shipping upwards of 125,000 barrels of oil a day."

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