Oil sands revenue and education

Letter to the Editor, Financial Post

Re: Enbridge Chief Defends Gateway Pipline. April 30

It was fascinating to read how Enbridge CEO Patrick Daniel is advocating for corporate socialism as he flogs his company’s Northern Gateway Pipeline project.

Mr. Daniel’s suggestion that Canadians will need to massively subsidize the transport of tar sands crude through a series of confiscatory tax mechanisms in order to make it viable is transparently ironic.

However, his suggestion that tar sands development and the Enbridge pipeline, as well as the attendant oil tanker traffic that will put British Columbia’s coastal environment at great risk, is at heart an egalitarian
crusade to help the world’s poor is cynical beyond belief.

Terence Corcoran is spot on when he states that what Enbridge “appears to be looking for is not so much a National Energy Strategy as a national regulatory system to codify massive transfers of wealth from one energy
source to another, from consumers to the oil sands, and from the oil sands to Third World countries.” But more than that, in effect Enbridge wants to externalize the cost of the inevitable catastrophic oil spill on B.C.’s
coast.

Attaching a dollar value to the damage that spilled oil does to marine and terrestrial ecosystems is an impossible task. The cost of the Exxon Valdez spill has been estimated at US$9.5-billion, of which Exxon paid
US$1-billion, with taxpayers footing the rest of the bill. Further, does that even begin to cover the price of a pod of killer whales driven to extinction or the demise of a coastal fishing community’s way of life?

Chris Genovali, executive director, Raincoast Conservation, Sidney, BC

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