Say the Names...

Al Purdy wrote a wonderful poem called "Say the names say the names" which celebrates the names of Canadian rivers - Tulameen, Kleena Kleene, Similkameen, Nahanni, Kluane and on and on in a celebratory song.

Enbridge is planning to build a dual pipeline that will carry bitumen and condensate across hundreds of waterways between Edmonton and Kitimat. Some of these waterways are rivers like the Parsnip (or what's left of it), the Nechako, the Morice and others are smaller creeks whose names are often known only to the folks who live along their banks or who fish in their shadows or who bend to wash or drink as they cross paths.

I want to collect the names of these rivers and creeks, to collect your stories, your poems, your songs so we can collectively give voice to the land living under the line Enbridge plans to draw.

People have also sent me copies of their presentations to the community oral presentations. If you'd like to add your voice, email me ( your stories and I'll post them for you. The copyright remains with you.

All the best.
Sheila Peters

Sunday, September 25, 2016

Hair straight back

No, I'm not talking about those equinox storms that are beginning to appear. I'm talking about the whirlpool of threats, hearings, events, decisions, comment periods, interventions and even fun happening in the Skeena watershed and on the coast these days.

River Days 2016

First of all - the fun. Yesterday, because of the generosity of Skeena Watershed Conservation Coalition, we got to join a one-hundred strong paddle down the Bulkley from Quick to Telkwa - thanks to all the organizers who put together the event.





Enbridge and an oil tanker moratorium - Sept. 30 deadline for input

If you want to keep up-to-date on what's happening around what looks like another end to Enbridge's plans to build a bitumen pipeline across three watersheds, here's a place to go: Friends of Morice-Bulkley. If you'd like to add your voice to the request to ask for a tanker moratorium that is:
  • legislated, 
  • has no sunset clause, and 
  • covers at least Hecate Strait, Dixon Entrance and Queen Charlotte Sound
go to Let's Talk Marine Transportation in Canada.
You have until Sept. 30.

Pipelines, pipelines, where ever you look

Of course, the Enbridge project, tied as it is to tar sands oil extraction, is not the only threat to water and climate. Kinder Morgan's proposed expansion, Energy East and other bitumen pipelines are being questioned by people across the continent. A CBC September 22 news story outlined the stand taken by 50 aboriginal groups in North America:

Aboriginal tribes from Canada and the northern United States signed a treaty on Thursday to jointly fight proposals to build more pipelines to carry crude from Alberta's oil sands, saying further development would damage the environment.

The treaty, signed in Montreal and Vancouver, came as the politics around pipelines have become increasingly sensitive in North America, with the U.S. Justice Department intervening last week to delay construction of a contentious pipeline in North Dakota.

The Treaty Alliance Against Tar Sands Expansion was signed by 50 aboriginal groups in North America, who also plan to oppose tanker and rail projects in both countries, they said in a statement.
Targets include projects proposed by Kinder Morgan Inc, TransCanada Corp and Enbridge Inc.

Lelu Island and LNG - Sept. 30 deadline for input

Pipelines aren't the only threat to the Skeena Watershed. To quote Friends of Wild Salmon,

Next Friday, September 30, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is expected to make a decision on whether to approve Pacific Northwest LNG's plant on Lelu Island in the Skeena estuary. Not only does his decision have potentially dire implications for Skeena wild salmon, it would create one of Canada's largest single sources of greenhouse gas pollution.

So much for clean green energy, Christi.

If you'd like to raise your concerns before Friday, click on the Wild Salmon link and follow the directions given.

Site C 

And just in case you don't think these things are related, it's pretty clear that much of the power the Site C dam would create is planned to fuel the fracking industry wreaking havoc in northeastern BC and elsewhere, the same industry that would have to expand significantly to fuel the Lelu Island project. Site C has never been subjected to BC's own economic and energy needs scrutiny under the aegis of the BC Utilities Commission. It's not being built to power electric cars.

For an overview, check out Amnesty International's campaign.

How about a national plan to curb carbon emissions? 

How about it!

How to make sense of it all?

We got to see To the Ends of the Earth in Smithers last week. It's a great documentary doing a damn fine job of untangling the Ponzi economics of energy production. If you get a chance, go see it.