Accidents Will Happen – Elvis Costello

     What if. We live in a world of what ifs. The stuff of wishes, of dreams. Or nightmares. 
     However, some what ifs demand serious comtemplation because of the catastrophic consequences of what if becoming what now. 
     What if the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline , which I have written about before, is built? Currently, examination of the issues, which interestingly include potential negative economic impacts among others, and the proposal continue. Let’s assume for now, that the proposal jumps through the hoops and Enbridge builds the twin pipelines to bring tar-sands oil to the harbour at Kitimat, British Columbia.
     What then?
     Enbridge points to its sterling record and careful attention to environmental impacts of its projects. However, what if a rupture to the pipeline occurs and oil spills into the surrounding area. This is a real concern because it’s a real possibility. Since 2006, Enbridge 
has had at least 7 spills from its pipelines across North America .
      The largest happened in July 2010 when over 800,000 barrels crude oil spilled into the Talmadge Creek leading to the Kalamazoo River in southwest Michigan. The United States Environmental Protection Agency originally gave Enbridge an August 31, 2011 to have the clean up completed. However, according to the EPA, as of April 17, the work has is not complete.
      Residents in the area question the clean-up efforts. Enbridge counters they are meeting EPA guidelines. This is what Enbridge said when the spill occurred:

     “For Enbridge, no spill is acceptable,” said Patrick D. Daniel, Enbridge President and CEO. “We
      understand that we must hold ourselves to the highest standards of openness and care in all
      communities where we operate because we have been serving North America’s energy needs for 60
      years, and we intend to be a good neighbor for decades to come.”

These three videos are self-explanatory.  

     I leave it to you to decide on truth, about who's right and who's wrong. I will say that I was able to find many many more stories demonstrating the questionable methods used to clean up this spill than I could find explanations from Enbridge on their containment efforts
     The real point is that once a spill occurs, severe and long-lasting damage is done. Much of it can't be undone. So is the Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline that right thing to do no matter if it's 99% safe? It's the 1% chance that I worry about. Is the risk worth it?

06/27/2012 5:16am

It is true that accidents will occur and there is very little that you can do to stop them but people should be careful in places where they can get hurt.

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