FortisBC's pipeline puts residents at risk

FortisBC's pipeline is putting residents at risk

I'm sure you saw the ads. Wait, what? You didn't? Huh... that's weird.

Earlier this month FortisBC hosted two virtual information sessions to provide updates on their preferred route for the Eagle Mountain to Woodfibre pipeline, and relocation of the compressor station to the Woodfibre site.

FortisBC has been strongly criticized for failing to engage with the general public, so their solution was to host two virtual information sessions, with no notice and minimal advertising, in the middle of the summer during a pandemic. Brilliant!

But we were there! FortisBC staff frequently deflected our questions, provided non-answers, and completely failed to answer several questions related to climate change and public safety. They abruptly ended the second session early despite several unanswered questions.

While we support the relocation of the compressor station from Mt Mulligan to the Woodfibre site, we are concerned that FortisBC’s decision to use natural gas to power the compressor station will significantly increase local greenhouse gas pollution and worsen air pollution, which has human health impacts. 

We also have several outstanding concerns that this high-pressure, 24-inch pipeline recklessly puts the health and safety of nearby residents at risk.

The pipeline is currently proposed to run past Ravens Plateau, along Finch Drive, and through the Industrial Park in Squamish. These areas have many new homes and businesses, and many homeowners were completely unaware that a 24-inch pipeline is proposed through their neighbourhood.

A new 3 km section of pipe is also proposed in Coquitlam near the Westwood Plateau neighbourhood, along with upgrades to the existing compressor station.

There is no need to route this pipeline through residential areas—alternate routes exist, so why is FortisBC choosing to put residents at risk?

To learn more about what FortisBC is planning, read this Squamish Chief article, or you can watch the second virtual information session video.

We will continue to hold FortisBC accountable, and we'll keep you all in the loop as the amendment process begins.

Stay tuned...

Tracey Saxby

Executive Director, My Sea to Sky

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