Opponents of Enbridge's Line 9 pipeline (including our Guelph Chapter) brought a halt to construction activity on the pipeline in Port Hope Ontario today.
Enbridge is conducting newly mandated hydrostatic testing on three segments of the 40-year-old pipeline before the company can be permitted to pump diluted bitumen through it. Activists maintain that this testing in no way mitigates Line 9's impacts.
A pipeline safety expert with over forty years of experience in the energy sector, Richard Kuprewicz, has stated that the probability of Line 9 rupturing is over 90% in the first five years of operation. This is due to the large number of fractures in the aging pipeline and the fact that Line 9 will carry various different kinds of crude- including diluted bitumen- which adds additional stresses to the pipeline.
From the Rising Tide Toronto facebook site: https://www.facebook.com/RisingTideToronto
“The hydrostatic tests were ordered by the National Energy Board in June 2015 as a further requirement beyond the initially mandated conditions. The Board acknowledged the impact of public concern stating in their press release that “a higher degree of confidence in the integrity, or condition, of the pipeline is required.” The order came after residents' groups and municipalities including the Greater Montreal Area demanded such testing.
However, even these groups are unsatisfied with the limited scope and lower-than-standard pressure at which Enbridge is testing the line. Those disrupting the testing today are not prepared to give the Line 9 project a thumbs-up even if it passes the testing. As demonstrator Rachel Avery emphasises, “It's not just a 'safety' issue for leaks along the line, it's not just 'no bitumen spill in my backyard.' It's about leaving it in the ground and putting a halt to the disastrous impacts of tar sands and fracking extraction.”
Line 9 is currently facing a legal challenge from Chippewas of the Thames First Nation on the basis that they were not consulted, as is their right as an Indigenous community in the pipeline's path. A decision on their challenge is expected this fall.”
Click here to see what pipeline safety expert Richard Kuprewicz testified to the NEB
An article with a great quote from our London Chapter on their 30 foot black pipeline snake