Jet fuel pipeline risk is 'too great,' says MLA Linda Reid
The MLA whose riding could be crossed by a jet fuel pipeline, fed by barges in the South Arm, said she is doing a "full court press" to sink the plan.
Richmond East MLA Linda Reid said the owner of the existing pipeline had offered to upgrade its fuel delivery service to the airport, but that and other options—14 in all—weren't fully considered by the Vancouver Airport Fuel Facilities Corporation.
"The issue isn't capacity. I believe the issue is ownership. They wish to own their own line. You don't need to drag it all the way across East Richmond, and you don't need to have that kind of traffic in the South Arm of the Fraser River, which just experienced the best salmon run they've had in probably a 100 years," said Reid.
The Environmental Assessment Office review must focus on risk assessment, she said, noting that risk is "too great."
"Aviation fuel in a salmon river is just wrong, and the potential for that is there," said Reid.
Reid said she's spent lots of time talking with the previous provincial minister of environment—who, along with two other ministers, will ultimately decide the project's fate. Now she's bending the ear of Terry Lake, who was appointed Minister of Environment March 14.
"We're going to get him here as quickly as we can and see what we can do to imprint upon him that this is not the option that should be considered," she said. "We're going to continue to do the full court press and see how we do."
Richmond Centre MLA Rob Howard noted Richmond council's opposition to the plan.
"The sense that I get is that they don't think they're being listened to," he said. "It sounds to me like the city thinks there are other options that are viable, I don't know that, but there may well be. So let's increase the communications on what those options are."
Richmond Steveston MLA John Yap said he understands concerns from the community.
"To be frank, I do share some of their concerns. My first response is the assessment should run it's course. The process is there for a reason," he said.
Project spokesperson Adrian Pollard was unavailable for comment.
Public comments are still being accepted at www.eao.gov.bc.ca or call 250-356-7441 for information.