The Northern Gateway Project
The Northern Gateway Project is a plan by the company Enbridge to build an oil pipeline from the Tar Sands in Alberta to Kitimat, British Columbia. Enbridge will send oil on tankers from Kitimat across the Pacific Ocean to China.
What do we stand to lose?
The First Nations are trying to stop Enbridge from building the pipeline. Norm and Ralph are friends to the First Nations and have made a movie called Stand to tell other people to stand against the Project. Haida Gwaii is a group of about 150 islands off the west coast of British Columbia that the oil tankers will pass by on their way to China. Haida Gwaii is important because there are unique plants and animals that you can not find anywhere else in the world!
The pipeline will go right through the Great Bear Rainforest where animals like the Spirit Bear live. There are ancient totem poles in the Great Bear Rain Forest and on Haida Gwaii that have meaning to all the First Nations because they were built by their ancestors and are important for their culture. The animals on the totem poles represent legends of the Haidas.
Building the pipeline will put the forest and the ocean at risk. If there is an oil spill, then many fish and seabirds will die. This will also affect the First Nations and animals like the Spirit Bear because fish is an important food source.
What do we stand to gain?
The Northern Gateway Project will have advantages for British Columbia. Enbridge will give free training for the Project. There will be more than 3000 workers to build the pipeline and 560 permanent jobs. In return for the oil, Enbridge will receive billions of dollars from China. Enbridge partnered with the First Nations and they will receive approximately 10 precent of the profits. Enbridge will have to pay taxes to the government. The Project will give the First Nations education, money and jobs.
The Northern Gateway Project has two sides: positive and negative. It will make jobs and money but could harm forests, oceans and animals. I think it is a bad idea because of all these things that will be at risk.