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Council activists protest Energy East ‘open house’ in Moose Jaw

Yesterday's protest outside the Energy East 'open house'. Photo by Tracey Mitchell.

Yesterday’s protest outside the Energy East ‘open house’. Photo by Tracey Mitchell.

Council of Canadians activists were at a TransCanada ‘open house’ in Moose Jaw, Saskatchewan last night to provide information critical of the proposed Energy East pipeline. Saskatoon-based Council of Canadians Board member Tracey Mitchell and Edmonton-based regional organizer Chris Gallaway were among those present.

Gallaway tweeted, “Sign at TransCanada Energy East open house says welcome. But folks with opposing views asked to leave the property.” And Mitchell tweeted, “TransCanada is taking our pic & vid without asking so we took theirs. What are they afraid of?”

TransCanada has organized several ‘open houses’ in Saskatchewan to promote their tar sands pipeline. These events have taken place in Burstall (October 15), Cabri (October 16), Whitewood (October 21), Moose Jaw (last night) and White City (tonight). Council of Canadians energy and climate justice campaigner Andrea Harden-Donahue has commented, “These so-called open houses are more like trade shows. They are not true consultations and won’t succeed in selling this export pipeline and the risk of a tar sands spill it brings to our community.”

Last night, Gallaway tweeted, “More TransCanada staff than members of the public at Moose Jaw Energy East open house. Does this count as meaningful public consultation?”

The Council of Canadians was also present at the company’s open house in Stittsville, Ontario last October. For more on that, please read Harden-Donahue’s blog Thanks, TransCanada, for the pen, I’ll take a pass on the oil spill.

The Energy East pipeline project involves a 4,600 kilometre 1.1 million barrels per day pipeline from Hardisty, Alberta to Saint John, New Brunswick, as well as a marine terminal in the St. Lawrence River to service export supertankers. The project would mean a 39 per cent increase in tar sands production from 2012 levels and would generate at least 32 million tonnes of greenhouse gas emissions from the crude oil production required to fill it.