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Kinder Morgan in Hope, BC with promises of compensation, improved safety and a deal for Nestle

TMX external relations manager Lexa Hobenshield

Texas-based Kinder Morgan held a community meeting in Hope, British Columbia about the Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline.

The Hope Standard reports that Trans Mountain Expansion Project external relations manager Lexa Hobenshield says that tree removal and site preparation along the route will begin in the fall, pipeline construction will begin in January 2018 (though she doesn’t know when construction on the Hope segment will begin), the construction will be done by the end of 2019, and that the pipeline will go into service “shortly after that”.

The article highlights, “Hobenshield said they have had less than 85 spills through 60 years and the number of spills over time have decreased.”

According to the news report, the pipeline will go through “residential, commercial and agricultural areas”, but that impacted household will receive financial compensation or alternative accommodations in a local hotel. The company is also providing a $500,000 grant which Hope may use to renovate Station House, a former railway station that is now a community arts centre.

The $7.4 billion pipeline will move 890,000 barrels of oil a day (which sells at about $50 per barrel, which would suggest about $44.5 million of product a day).

The article also notes that Hobenshield says that both pipelines and rail shipments have their place in the market.

It’s also significant that Nestle extracts 265 million litres of water a year from a well in Hope for their bottled water operations.

Our Chilliwack-based ally WaterWealth recently reported, “Nestle asked for and got a route change to move the new pipeline further from their wells. The old pipe may also get moved in that section. Chilliwack residents have been asking for the route to be moved off the aquifer we get our water from. Does Nestle have some pull that we don’t?”

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government approved the Alberta-to-British Columbia pipeline in November 2016. The pipeline would move tar sands crude through Jasper National Park into the Lower Mainland of British Columbia where it would be loaded on to 400 supertankers a year at Burrard Inlet for export.  The pipeline would cross 1309 water courses and produce between 20 to 26 million tonnes of carbon pollution a year. Two-thirds of the 120 First Nations along the 1,150 kilometre pipeline route have not given their free, prior and informed consent for the pipeline.

Kinder Morgan still faces the obstacle of court challenges and the need to raise the funds to finance their project. To ensure that your pension funds don’t help build this pipeline, please see this online action alert that calls on the Canada Pension Plan not to invest in Kinder Morgan.