BC rejects oil pipeline proposal for Enbridge's Northern Gateway

Enbridge's (TSX: ENB) Northern Gateway pipeline proposal was rejected by the BC government on the grounds it doesn't address environmental concerns.

The government said Friday in a written release its questions had not been satisfactorily answered when it had reviewed all of the evidence and submissions made to the national joint review panel.

After a thorough examination, the environment minister said they had asked substantive questions about the pipeline route, spill response and financial structure to handle any incidents.

"Northern Gateway has said that they would provide effective spill response in all cases. However, they have presented little evidence as to how they will respond," the minister said.

Without proper answers, the government does not believe a certificate should be granted for the project.

BC restated its conditions for building and operating heavy-oil pipelines:

  1. Pass the environmental review
  2. Establish a world-leading system for marine oil spill prevention and response
  3. Establish world-leading practices for land oil spill prevention and response
  4. Opportunities for and consultation with First Nations and respect for treaty rights
  5. BC to receive a fair share of the project's fiscal and economic benefits

The National Energy Board's joint review panel will make the final decision on the project.

Government officials will put forward their final arguments in person to the panel in Terrace, BC, on June 17.

Enbridge's $5.5 billion Northern Gateway project includes two pipelines running 1,177 kilometres to carry 525,000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta to BC's north coast.

 

Images: Dogwood Initiative, Creative Commons, Flickr