The West Canada Marine Response Corporation is proposing five new oil spill response bases on the island following Kinder Morgan’s approval.

Regional gov’t pressuring federal Liberals to fund west coast spill response bases

Government officials are pressuring the federal Liberals to fund six marine spill response bases on the west coast after Kinder Morgan put a hold on any capital pipeline project spending last week.

The West Coast Marine Response Corporation (WCMRC) spill response base construction was contingent on Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline getting final approval. Port Alberni was supposed to receive one of those six bases.

At the Association of Vancouver Island and Coastal Communities conference last weekend, the City of Port Alberni brought forward an urgent motion asking the provincial and federal governments “to guarantee the construction of the oil spill response bases no matter what happens with Kinder Morgan,” Port Alberni city councillor Chris Alemany said. The AVICC supports the motion, Alemany said in a social media post.

Courtenay-Alberni MP Gord Johns, visiting Port Alberni last week for an event at the AV Multiplex, said the issue of marine spill response “should never have been politicized.”

He hopes to bring up the issue in the House of Commons in Ottawa, to find a way to fund the marine spill response bases whether or not the Kinder Morgan pipeline project goes ahead.

“We’re disappointed that Kinder Morgan has halted their decision and that subsequently put on hold the development of the WCMRC project here,” Port Alberni Port Authority president and Ceo Zoran Knezevic said. “It affects more than our jobs plan development.”

Knezevic said the spill response base in Port Alberni would have employed 22 people and included “five or six” vessels.

“The decision to postpone the build up of the pipeline is quite the negative effect on Port Alberni.”

Work on Port Alberni’s WCMRC wharf will continue, because it is only partially complete, WCMRC spokesperson Michael Lowry said. “The construction of our main base on the port property will be on hold,” he added.

The wharf is partially built behind Port Boat House. Some of the base vessels were supposed to be based there. The decking will be completed, as will paving and installation of railings to make the site safe, Knezevic said.

Port Alberni was to house a barge, boom and skimming vessels as well as various support vessels. Work was supposed to be completed in 2018.

“This would be a significant loss to the west coast marine community,” Lowry said. “These bases were going to be for any kind of spill. They will be a significant loss if they don’t go forward.”

editor@albernivalleynews.com

Just Posted

Alberni Valley Transition Town talks green planning

March 20 talk features Jack Anderson, speaking of innovative building techniques

Port Alberni’s firefighters learn to save themselves in ground survival training

Specialized training equipment brought in for Ground Survival Program

Port Alberni RCMP have their eyes on impaired drivers

March 17 to 23 is National Impaired Driving Prevention Week

Premier on hand as Paper Excellence finalizes Catalyst Paper purchase

Sale includes Crofton mill, plus mills in Port Alberni and Powell River

Three people deemed heroes after rescuing another in fiery crash on B.C. highway

Two people taken to hospital following head-on collision near Port Alberni

Five highlights in the 2019 federal budget

Latest budget includes a sprinkling of money for voters across a wide spectrum

Cougar on Island might have been shot with bow-and-arrow

Conservation officer service looking for animal near Port Alice

Facebook to overhaul ad targeting to prevent discrimination

The company is also paying about $5 million to cover plaintiffs’ legal fees and other costs

B.C. mosque part of open-house effort launched in wake of New Zealand shootings

The ‘Visit a Mosque’ campaign aims to combat Islamophobia

‘That’s a load of crap’: Dog poop conspiracy spreads in White Rock

Allegation picked up steam through a Facebook page run by a city councillor

Explosives unit brought in after suspicious boxes left at B.C. RCMP detachment

Nanaimo RCMP issues all clear after packages were found on lawn earlier in the day

Newfoundland man caught after posting photo of himself drinking and driving

The 19-year-old took a photo of himself holding a beer bottle and cigarette while at the wheel

2019 BUDGET: As deficit grows, feds spend on job retraining, home incentives

Stronger economy last year delivered unexpected revenue bump of an extra $27.8 billion over six years

Carfentanil found in 15% of overdose deaths in January: B.C. coroner

Carfentanil is 100 times more powerful than illicit fentanyl and used to tranquilize elephants

Most Read