To hear many east of the Rockies tell it, a dilbit spill in British Columbia's coastal waters isn't going to happen, although it is, and, should it, they have a "world class" oil spill response programme, although they don't. Those are just lies they have to spin to scrub the narrative of their "national interest" claim. Isolate all the problems and then you can say it's a matter of economics and one recalcitrant province.
South of the border, the Americans are remarkably candid about the realities of an increase in tanker traffic resulting from the J. Trudeau Memorial Pipeline expansion. Their honesty is a refreshing break from the nonsense this prime minister tries to force feed British Columbians.
The presence of that much more oil puts the Strait at a “very high” risk of spills, according to one study by Canadian authorities. Another showed that in six of seven simulated spill-response drills by B.C. officials, more than half the oil during a major spill would have remained in the water five days after a hypothetical accident.
“We haven’t felt that in the past the standards and capability across the border were as strong as they are on the U.S. side,” said Jensen, with the Department of Ecology.
In addition, oil-sands petroleum has in previous accidents proved more difficult to clean up than North Slope crude. A former National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) chemist has argued that oil from Alberta could sink if left on the surface too long, making cleanup virtually impossible.
“We don’t really know how to clean a spill of that stuff up,” said Kongsgaard, of the Puget Sound Partnership. “You’re not going to hear from the cleanup people that we really understand how it behaves at all.”
But the fact that Haro Strait and Boundary Pass just to the northeast are the most likely place for any serious accident poses a special kind of concern for many officials.
The region’s endangered killer whales concentrate in those areas, and “We’ve seen that they don’t move around to avoid spilled oil,” said Brad Hanson, a marine-mammal expert with NOAA.It's times like these that you get to know your friends from your, let's put it this way, your adversaries. The way I see it, our adversaries are the Alberta thugs, Notley and her soon to be replacement, Jason Kenney, and the Ottawa thugs, your prime minister Trudeau and his pack of drylander MPs. It is passing curious that on this pipeline/supertanker steamroller, Justin doesn't have one of his British Columbia MPs leading the charge. Those cowards have gone mute, perhaps Justice Minister Jody excepted and even Jody is keeping her lip buttoned. The rest are fretting about whether they'll get their asses handed to them next year. No, the Gang of Four are Quebec's Trudeau, Manitoba's Carr, Ontario's McKenna and Quebec's Garneau. A dilbit spill will be no skin off their asses. And, to prove it, McKenna even approved massively toxic Corexit as an oil spill dispersant.
But we do have friends. We have friends in Washington state and Oregon and California, even in Alaska. Notley and Trudeau remind us of the difference between friend and - well, adversary. Notley showed that she's no friend when she passed legislation allowing her government to cut off oil and gas supplies to British Columbia. Trudeau, our other adversary, let her get away with it.
Washington governor, Jay Inslee, however showed that we have a real friend to the south when he assured BC premier Horgan that Washington would supply us with the required fossil fuels if Alberta put the screws to us. It almost seems reminiscent of the Berlin airlift. Notley, with Trudeau's concurrence, threatens to disrupt life for ordinary British Columbians if we don't submit to her will. And then the Good Guys put in an appearance with a friendly "fear not."
Times like these make me just a little sympathetic to Donald Trump who cannot find the billions of dollars he'll need to build his wall along the Mexican border. British Columbians already have the wall we might need. It's huge and it's granite and it reaches thousands of feet into the sky. It's even aligned right, north and south. It's the Rocky Mountains and all the other mountain ranges west of it.
It's not unusual for newcomers to have trouble adjusting to those mountains. They complain that the mountains make them somehow feel cut off from their families and home provinces. Some just go back from whence they came. Some find those mountains distressing but most of us find them assuring, our own Great Wall.
Our majestic mountains create not just a physical divide but also a psychological separation. I wonder if Trudeau gets that. I'm not sure he does.