Yesterday the president of the Northern Gateway pipeline, John Carruthers, announced that the 2018 start-up date for the project is “quickly evaporating.” And while we’re hopeful this could spell bigger problems for Enbridge, Carruthers said it’s only a temporary delay while Enbridge works to “re-engage” with the First Nations people that have fought the intrusion of oil and gas into their territory.
If built, the dual pipelines of the Northern Gateway would ship 525,000 barrels of tar sands bitumen per day from the Edmonton area to Kitimat, B.C. Along the way, the pipelines would cross more than 800 streams and rives, including sensitive salmon spawning habitat in the upper Fraser, Skeena and Kitimat watersheds. They would also bisect the Great Bear Rainforest, home of the Spirit Bear. And with as many as 220 supersized oil tankers being introduced into B.C.’s sensitive coastal waters, it’s hard to imagine how Enbridge could avoid a spill and equally hard to imagine how detrimental it would be.
SpOIL, produced by the International League of Conservation Photographers and Pacific Wild, considers the environmental and social disaster that could result from the construction of the pipeline. The film was the result of a 14-day expedition to the Great Bear Rainforest that called upon 10 conservation photographers and videographers to document the fragile ecosystem of the Great Bear Rainforest and the people who call the area home. The result is a stunning homage to the landscapes, wildlife and culture of the Great Bear and poignant reminder that the fight is far from over if we want to protect the beautiful places along the pipeline’s route.