Energy East pipeline proposal goes down the tubes

by Leon Thompson October 6, 2017, 0:22
Energy East pipeline proposal goes down the tubes

According to analysis from the group, Energy East would have added 236 million tons of additional greenhouse gas emissions every year.

"I could be at the grocery store, I could be at the coffee shop, and people would constantly stop or say to me "protect our drinking water".

TransCanada said last month that it would halt its efforts to get regulatory approvals for the controversial projects.

"It's a blow. It's being portrayed as a business decision but it's more than that", said Chris Bloomer, CEO of the Canadian Energy Pipeline Association, adding the decision means about 400,000 barrels per day of foreign oil will continue to be imported into Eastern Canada.

"TransCanada knows that Energy East would never receive approval if all its climate pollution was taking into account", Adam Scott, a senior campaigner with Oil Change International, a nonprofit research and advocacy group that looks at the impacts of fossil fuels, told ThinkProgress.

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In a statement, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley said it was "deeply disappointing" and called on the National Energy Board "to send a clear message on what the future of project reviews look like in Canada".

The premiers of Alberta and New Brunswick expressed disappointment over the decision, while the Opposition Conservatives blasted Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's Liberal government for "disastrous" energy policies that they blame for lost jobs and investment.

Quebec Environment Minister David Heurtel said TransCanada simply realized it didn't have much of a choice left but to abandon the project. Crude oil prices have slipped near $50 a barrel and other commodities are weaker as the US dollar found its footing.

"After careful review of changed circumstances, we will be informing the National Energy Board that we will no longer be proceeding with our Energy East application", company chief executive Russ Girling said in a statement.

"But there is no doubt that with the Energy East pipeline project we would have been able to do even more to grow the economy, strengthen education and improve health care in our province".

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Notley said although the decision was driven by a broad range of factors, it was an "unfortunate outcome for Canadians". Named one of Canada's Top 100 Employers in 2017, Irving Oil operates Canada's largest refinery, in Saint John, New Brunswick, which is located 65 miles north of the U.S. border and has reached production rates in excess of 320,000 barrels per day.

August 19, 2015: TransCanada says concerns raised about Energy East in a report about the potential impact of the project on whales and some fisheries in the Bay of Fundy are unfounded.

Opponents said the projects would increase greenhouse gas emissions by allowing oil-sands producers, the most greenhouse-gas intensive sources of crude, to ramp up production.

There was jubilation in some quarters on Thursday, with Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre tweeting that the project's abandonment is a major victory.

TransCanada made the announcement Thursday.

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"This project was so wrong and so unsafe, its hard to believe it was seriously contemplated", Gretchen Fitzgerald, national program director of environmental organization the Sierra Club, said.


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