B.C.'s NDP opposes pipeline projects as election nears
B.C. NDP leader Adrian Dix makes an announcement about his policy during the British Columbia election campaign in Victoria, B.C. Wednesday, April 24, 2013. (Chad Hipolito / THE CANADIAN PRESS)
Published Sunday, April 28, 2013 12:29PM EDT
British Columbia’s NDP Leader Adrian Dix says he doesn’t want to see Vancouver’s port transformed into a major oil export point, quelling some concerns among the province’s environmentalists.
Dix said a proposal to twin a Kinder Morgan pipeline from Alberta to B.C. would add significant oil tanker traffic at the port. The NDP has already voiced its opposition to the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline proposal and Dix said he’s “setting the parameter” on what the party believes is acceptable ahead of the May 14 election.
“What’s not acceptable to us, I guess, is transforming the port of Vancouver, which has so much value to us, into a major oil export port,” Dix told CTV’s Question Period.
Going into the election campaign, the NDP faced criticism from conservationists over the party’s refusal to take a stand on Kinder Morgan. Last week, Dix said he was unlikely to support the expansion if the NDP win the upcoming election.
The governing Liberals later accused Dix of flip-flopping on the issue.
Recent polling by Angus Reid shows the NDP has a 14-point lead over the Liberals ahead of the May 14 election.
Dix has also said he would take B.C. out of a current agreement with the federal government that sees Ottawa ultimately make decisions on resources projects, such as pipelines.
“We’re going to withdraw from that agreement on Enbridge Northern Gateway and presumably on Kinder Morgan and have our own process here,” he said.
Dix added that increased oil tanker traffic on B.C.’s coast poses a significant risk to the local economy and should be debated at the provincial level.
“I respect the province of Alberta. I’m not seeking to intervene on their jurisdiction. But within B.C.’s jurisdiction I think it’s fair to say we have the right to make the decision and people in B.C. feel strongly about this question,” he said.