Energy East pipeline is safe good for country TransCanada tells NEB hearings

SAINT JOHN, N.B. – TransCanada Corp. stressed its commitment to the safety of oil shipments as three days of hearings into the proposed $15.7 billion Energy East pipeline project opened in New Brunswick on Monday.“We are committed to delivering this oil safely, responsibly, and reliably, and our goal is to have zero incidents,” said John Van der Put, vice president of eastern oil pipeline projects for TransCanada Corp. (TSX:TRP).He told a three-member National Energy Board panel convening in Saint John that the project is “the safest and most environmentally responsible way” to transport crude oil from Western to Eastern Canada.He said more than 700 pipeline route changes have already been made as a result of a public consultation process with communities in the three years since the project was announced.“We submit that moving forward with the Energy East project is in the best interests of the country, of the province of New Brunswick, and the City of Saint John,” said Van der Put.A spokesman for manufacturers in the province emphasized the province is badly in need of jobs the project would bring, citing unemployment rates of up to 20 per cent in some counties.Joel Richardson of Canadian Manufacturers and Exporters said as unemployed New Brunswickers return home from the West due to the downturn in the oil industry, there are growing numbers of skilled tradespeople in dire need of work.“We believe the approval of Energy East will help create new direct and indirect jobs for thousands of unemployed people in New Brunswick … and will generate tax revenue to help us cover health care, education and social services in New Brunswick,” he told the panel.However, groups including Nature Canada and the Sierra Club voiced their concerns about the potential environmental impact of the project.Emma Hebb, of the Sierra Club Foundation of Canada, said the project is simply the wrong one given the environmental challenges posed by global warming.“We do not believe that this is the best thing for the public interest because it entails an investment in fossil fuel infrastructure at a time when all good science tells us that we need to be switching away from these fossil fuel resources as soon as possible,” said Hebb.Both Hebb and representatives from Nature Canada quizzed the company on its plans in the event of an oil spill along the proposed 4,500 kilometre route.Van der Put said the key is to put in place a rapid response to any emergency anywhere along the pipeline.He said the company would be able to have field personnel on site within three hours of a spill and equipment on site within six hours.He also said TransCanada does site-specific planning to ensure those response targets are met.As part of the development, crude oil from Alberta would be shipped through the pipeline to Saint John, where it would be refined.Garry Prosser, whose Anthony’s Cove home is across from the proposed tank farm for the marine terminal where the oil will be stored, expressed frustration with a lack of answers from TransCanada about the effects on homeowners in the vicinity.Prosser said he hasn’t received answers to his concerns.“What price do I have to pay?” said Prosser. “My quality of life, enjoyment of property, health and safety, property values and sense of community will be dramatically affected by this project.”The executive director of the conservation group Nature NB testified that over 200 species and millions of individual birds migrate in the area where the pipeline is planned and over the waters where supertankers will steam with huge cargos of oil.Vanessa Roy-McDougall noted that species such as the eider ducks, Wilson’s storm petrels, Atlantic puffins, razorbills and terns have nesting grounds in the Bay of Fundy.Nearly 30 species of shorebirds migrate through the bay in late summer and early fall, and between 1.1 and 2.1 million semipalmated sandpipers — the bulk of the world’s population of the species — migrate along the coast each year, she testified.“Given the number of birds and species at risk, such as the northern right whale, that frequent the area, Nature NB is concerned about how the increased tanker traffic and the large amount of oil in storage will lead to an increased risk of oil spills in the area,” said Roy-McDougall.She said such a spill would be devastating to birds and marine species, “and in some cases devastating to a large percentage of the global population of the species.”Van der Put said there is a very low probability of such a spill.In all 337 interveners are scheduled to testify about the pipeline during hearings in cities across Canada.The hearings are scheduled to conclude in Kingston, Ont., in December and the energy board must make a recommendation to the federal government by March, 16, 2018. Energy East pipeline is safe, good for country, TransCanada tells NEB hearings by The Canadian Press Posted Aug 8, 2016 8:16 am MDT Last Updated Aug 8, 2016 at 2:40 pm MDT AddThis Sharing ButtonsShare to TwitterTwitterShare to FacebookFacebookShare to RedditRedditShare to 電子郵件Email read more

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Gilmore Nobody is going to be barred from the insolvency process

first_imgTÁNAISTE EAMON GILMORE has insisted that nobody will be excluded from the new insolvency process.Speaking in the Dáil this morning, Gilmore said “exorbitant fees or attitudes by banks or professionals” will not bar anyone from taking part in the process.The new Insolvency Service of Ireland opened last week but concerns have been raised about fees charged by Personal Insolvency Practitioners (PIPs) and that some in mortgage distress will not qualify for the process.The issue was raised by the Sinn Féin TD Mary Lou McDonald who asked that Gilmore guarantee that no family will be denied access to a PIP because of inability to pay upfront fees of between €5,000 and €7,000.Gilmore insisted: “The reason that we introduced the legislation, the reason we established the Personal Insolvency Service, the reason we put in place the various methods for non-judicial debt settlement is so that mortgage problems and arrears problems will be resolved.”He insisted that nobody is going to be barred from the process which he said has to be done an individual, case-by-case basis.“We don’t want any issue of arrogance, we want this problem resolved,” he said.SNAs and medical cardsGilmore also said that the process of resolving the Priory Hall debacle has got under way this morning and said he hoped “there will be a resolution within a short period of time”.Earlier Fianna Fáil leader Micheál Martin asked Gilmore about the need for advocacy for children in the process of obtaining Special Needs Assistants, highlighting the case of five-year-old Kate Crowley, a severely disabled child, who was denied an SNA.Gilmore said that the Minister for Education Ruairí Quinn was not aware of the issue but would examine the case and will respond to it. Martin said he was surprised that Quinn is not aware of it given he had written to the Department of Education.The Tánaiste also denied that there was a targeting of medical card holders after independent TD Seamus Healy asked: “When will you government stop terrorising elderly people and sick across the country?”Healy said that the HSE was “punishing and hounding elderly people” by carrying out the review of the medical card statuses.Gilmore insisted: “There are more people today with medical cards than at anytime in the history of the State.”He accused Healy of raising the issue to “make a political point and a political charge against the government”.Read: PIP apologises for comments about ‘bigger houses’ for professionalsMore: 140 calls to insolvency service in first day of businessAlso: Turf, arrears and everything else happening in Leinster House todaylast_img read more

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