British Columbia's government can't accept the risks associated with Enbridge's Northern Gateway pipeline proposal_ unless the risks are reduced, and the benefits to B.C. are increased.
The provincial government's position was outlined by Langley MLA and Minister of Aboriginal Affairs Mary Polak and Environment Minister Terry Lake on Monday.
That position includes five requirements that must be met before the government approves any new heavy-oil pipeline, such as the Enbridge Northern Gateway.
"Our government is committed to economic development that is balanced with environmental protection," Premier Christy Clark said in a news release. "We need to combine environmental safety with our fair share of fiscal and economic benefits."
The five minimum requirements are as follows:
- Successful completion of the environmental review process.
- World-leading marine oil spill response, prevention and recovery systems for B.C.'s coastline.
- World-leading practices for land oil spill prevention, response and recovery systems to manage and mitigate the risks and costs of heavy oil pipelines
- Legal requirements regarding Aboriginal and treaty rights are addressed, and First Nations are provided with the opportunities, information and resources necessary to participate in and benefit from a heavy-oil project.
- British Columbia receives a fair share of the fiscal and economic benefits of a proposed heavy oil project.
The province's announcement follows comments by Clark last week, in which she said the risks of the proposed Enbridge pipeline outweigh the benefits.