Union Positions on Northern Gateway and Line 9 Pipelines

The Joint Review Panel for the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project, mandated by the Minister of the Environment and the National Energy Board, is reaching the final stages, with a report expected by the end of 2013. The written process was completed on May 31; final oral arguments will be heard in Terrace, B.C., beginning June 17 and lasting approximately two weeks. On May 31, the Government of British Columbia submitted a written statement opposing the current proposal and setting five conditions, including that First Nations treaty rights must be respected, and B.C. must receive its “fair share” of the fiscal and economic benefits of the pipeline construction and operation, as they first demanded in 2012.

Receiving less coverage were the May 31 written submissions by the Communications, Energy and Paperworkers Union (CEP), the Alberta Federation of Labour, and the United Fishermen and Allied Workers’ Union (UFAWU). All three unions oppose approval of the pipeline, arguing that refining jobs in Canada will be lost by shipping raw bitumen to Asia.

The CEP position in support of Enbridge’s West-to-East Line 9 pipeline project is more controversial. As reported by the Toronto Globe and Mail and the Montreal Gazette, the CEP in Quebec is part of a campaign by the Coalition in Support of Line 9 Reversal, which includes the Quebec Employers Council, Montreal Board of Trade, and the Fédération des chambres de commerce du Québec. Representatives launched the coalition in Montreal on May 29, stating, “This project is essential for Montreal and the whole Quebec economy and has broad support from the Ontario and Quebec governments … If refining does not remain competitive in Montreal East, then ultimately, there will be more closures and the specialized petrochemical plants will have to import their feedstocks or face closure.”

LINKS:  

Full Joint Review Panel for Northern Gateway website is at:  http://gatewaypanel.review-examen.gc.ca/clf-nsi/hm-eng.html (English) and http://gatewaypanel.review-examen.gc.ca/clf-nsi/hm-fra.html (French); all submitted documents are available under Section D: Intervenors/Intervenants.

B.C. Officially Opposes Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline (May 31), and multiple links to related stories, at the CBC website at: http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/british-columbia/story/2013/05/31/bc-northern-gateway-rejected.html

Written submissions to Northern Gateway hearings: by CEP is at: https://www.neb-one.gc.ca/ll-eng/livelink.exe/fetch/2000/90464/90552/384192/620327/624910/785392/959884/D39-13-1_CEP_-_Final_Argument_of_CEP_%2800519679%29_-_A3I1H1.pdf?nodeid=959885&vernum=0 ; by Alberta Federation of Labour at (and see further details of their position in a separate Submission to the Standing Committee on Alberta’s Economic Future on The Study of the BRIK (Bitumen Royalty in Kind) Program (March 2013) at: http://www.afl.org/index.php/component/option,com_sectionex/Itemid,118/id,7/view,category/.

Submission by the United Fishermen is at:  https://www.neb-one.gc.ca/ll-eng/livelink.exe/fetch/2000/90464/90552/384192/620327/624910/697824/960959/D203-14-1_United_Fishermen_and_Allied_Workers%27_Union_-_CAW_-Final_Arg_May_31.13_-_A3I2A8?nodeid=960822&vernum=0 

RE LINE 9:

“Refinery union warns against TransCanada exports of crude through Quebec ” in Globe and Mail (May 29,2013) by Nathan Vanderklippe at:

“Line 9 pipeline reversal last chance to save 2,000 jobs: lobby group” in the
Montreal Gazette (May 29) at:http://www.montrealgazette.com/business/Line+pipeline+reversal+last+chance+save+jobs+lobby+group/8451769/story.html

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