Inability of government to monitor, enforce, and respond to issues

The Canadian Standards Association publishes standards for the design, construction, operation, maintenance, and decommissioning of pipelines and compressor stations through CSA standard Z662. This standard has been adopted through regulation under the Oil and Gas Activities Act.

Following significant cuts to budgets and staffing levels at government ministries, the BC Oil & Gas Commission has enabled a Self-Assessment Protocol, which essentially means that industry will be monitoring their own pipelines and compressor stations.

Regulators do not have sufficient staff, knowledge or money to effectively regulate the oil and gas industry, leaving industry to be self-monitoring. Some recent examples of accidents that resulted in deaths and environmental destruction include: the Lac Megantic rail disaster; the Mt Polley tailing pond spill; and the two sawmill explosions in British Columbia. There is little hope that the Province of BC will have the capacity to regulate, monitor and inspect this pipeline and compressor station to a standard that will prevent future accidents.

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