In 2014, the City of Burnaby, City of Vancouver and Tsleil-Waututh Nation retained Genwest Systems Inc. to model oil spill scenarios in Burrard Inlet. Each dot in the animations below represents 2,000 litres of oil.
Model from First Narrows Bridge
Model from Second Narrows Bridge
BURNABY SUBMITS ARGUMENT TO NEB AND ASKS FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO SUSPEND HEARINGS
The City of Burnaby has submitted to the National Energy Board the City’s argument against Kinder Morgan’s pipeline and tank farm proposal
The City filed more than 300 pages of Information Requests with the National Energy Board for the Trans Mountain Expansion Project on May 8, 2014. Kinder Morgan responded to the City’s Information Requests on June 18, 2014. In reviewing the responses, the City has now filed the following Notice Of Motion with the National Energy Board on July 4, 2014.
Press Release City of Burnaby submits more than 300 pages of questions on the Kinder Morgan Pipeline and Tank Farm Proposal to the National Energy Board for response from Kinder Morgan.
Excerpts This document has been prepared by the City of Burnaby with the assistance of their legal counsel. The purpose of the document is to give the Burnaby's citizens and the media a summary of the key concerns with Trans Mountain’s application raised in the City of Burnaby’s more than 300 pages of information requests to Trans Mountain.
For Intervenors and Commenters:
Assistance With Information Requests
The City of Burnaby would like to help you with your information request submission to the National Energy Board (NEB) as an Intervenor or Commenter in the Hearing process for the proposed Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Expansion Project.
On December 16, 2013, Kinder Morgan made an application to the National Energy Board (NEB) to expand the Trans Mountain pipeline system. The proposed expansion, which is generally referenced as the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP), would allow for the development of a second pipeline from Strathcona County, Alberta (near Edmonton) to Burnaby, BC for the shipment of heavy crude petroleum products to the United States and new foreign markets.
The TMEP, if approved by the NEB, would increase the capacity of the overall Trans Mountain pipeline system from 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 890,000. In order to accommodate this significant increase in pipeline capacity, the TMEP proposes to expand existing infrastructure and terminal facilities within the system, including the following facilities located in Burnaby:
Burnaby Mountain Terminal – Kinder Morgan proposes to more than triple the capacity of the existing storage facility located at the base of Burnaby Mountain; and,
Westridge Marine Terminal – Kinder Morgan proposes to construct a new dock facility along the Burnaby waterfront of the Burrard Inlet, such that up to three Aframax tankers can be accommodated at the terminal at any given time, plus additional barge infrastructure.
The proposal, if approved, would have significant immediate and long-term impacts to Burnaby and the surrounding Metro Vancouver region from an economic, environmental and community perspective. The proposal would also severely increase the potential risk of oil spills and environmental contamination of British Columbia’s waterways and coastline.
The City of Burnaby has expressed their opposition to the TMEP to the National Energy Board, senior levels of government and to Kinder Morgan, given the impacts and implications of the proposed expansion for Burnaby and its communities. The Council report is available here.
Burnaby’s Participation in the National Energy Board (NEB) Public Hearing Process
The National Energy Board (NEB) is the regulatory body responsible for the approval of pipeline developments that are over 400 kilometres long and/or involve inter-provincial movement of petroleum products. This makes Kinder Morgan’s TMEP application to expand the Trans Mountain pipeline system under the full jurisdiction of the NEB and federal government. While the City of Burnaby does not have any decision making powers on such matters, the City has and will continue to oppose the TMEP in order to protect the health and safety of its citizens, and the surrounding environment.
The National Energy Board, as part of their application review process of major pipeline developments, is mandated to hold a Public Hearing, during which stakeholders directly affected by the project may participate.
On February 3, 2014, Burnaby officially made an application to the NEB to participate in the Public Hearing process as an Intervenor. The City's application was accepted by the NEB, so the City now has official intervenor status.
To learn more about the City of Burnaby’s opposition to the proposed Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP), and how you can provide your direct input, please review the information and links provided below:
Mayor Corrigan announces Burnaby’s application for Intervenor status.
Burnaby Seeks Intervenor Status to Oppose Kinder Morgan Pipeline that would travel through and terminate in Burnaby
On December 16, 2013, Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline (TMPL) submitted an application to the National Energy Board (NEB), seeking authorization to build and operate its proposed $5.4 billion Trans Mountain Expansion Project, which would almost triple oil capacity (from 300,000 to 890,000 barrels per day) in pipelines running to Burnaby from the Alberta oilsands, and bring approximately six times as many tankers per year into Burrard Inlet (up from about 60 to 400), shipping diluted bitumen from the Westridge Marine Terminal for export. The pipeline would run through Burnaby and would terminate at Kinder Morgan’s Westridge Marine Terminal.
To oppose construction of the pipeline and ensure that many potential negative impacts of the proposed pipeline are considered by the National Energy Board, the City of Burnaby has formally applied for Intervenor Status in the Hearings that are part of the NEB Public Hearing process.
The proposed pipeline would carry diluted bitumen (heavy crude oil products) from the Alberta oil sands to Burnaby, for export. Its construction and operation would have many negative impacts on the City. The pipeline would require extensive land disruption for construction and would result in expansion of facilities in Burnaby. Much of the line through Burnaby is proposed to follow new routes that would require new rights-of-way to be constructed. In addition, Kinder Morgan’s application proposes expansion of the Burnaby Mountain Terminal (the large round holding tanks that can be seen on the mountain in North Burnaby) from 13 to 26 tanks (more than tripling their storage capacity with larger tanks) and the construction of three new loading docks and a utility dock at the Westridge Marine Terminal in Burnaby.
Regarding required new rights-of-way, west of Hope everything from agricultural land to the Fraser River and residential communities will be impacted. Trans Mountain’s application describes the route: “West of the District of Hope, the proposed pipeline corridor generally follows the existing TMPL and Highway 1 (Trans-Canada Highway) rights-of-way in the narrow strip of land between the Fraser River and the Skagit Range of the Cascade Mountains. The remainder of the proposed pipeline corridor traverses the rich agricultural lands of the Lower Mainland of BC, which becomes increasingly urbanized from the Fraser Valley Regional District west to Metro Vancouver.”
Specifically regarding new corridors that will be required to allow the pipeline to travel through Burnaby, Trans Mountain’s application states: “On the north side of the Fraser River, urbanization in the cities of Coquitlam and Burnaby has encroached considerably on the existing TMPL right-of-way in the past 60 years to make contiguous looping extremely difficult... The proposed pipeline corridor follows the Lougheed Highway, although a deviation is being considered to traverse existing industrial lands and railway easements within the Brunette River Conservation Area. Both the proposed pipeline corridor and the deviation eventually connect to TMPL’s Burnaby Terminal via other city streets.”
“I am extremely concerned about this proposal to build pipelines through Burnaby streets and communities to carry heavy oil from Alberta for export,” says Mayor Derek Corrigan. “Our City would be severely impacted by the construction of the new pipelines, then would be perpetually and permanently vulnerable to potential spills – on Burnaby land, near Burnaby homes and in Burrard Inlet. Trans Mountain’s application even shows potential spill zones that would see oil flow down Burnaby Mountain into Burnaby Lake. This is completely unacceptable and we will do everything we can to ensure this pipeline is not built.”
“We have already dealt with one significant Trans Mountain spill in our City – in 2007 . A Burnaby neighbourhood was drenched in oil, oil leaked into Burrard Inlet and Kask Creek, and 44 homes were oiled, requiring evacuation of families. This was a relatively small spill and was not the diluted bitumen that Trans Mountain is proposing to carry in the new lines. In spite of safety assurances from Kinder Morgan and Trans Mountain, in Burnaby we know what can and does really happen with pipelines and we will not stand idly by while Trans Mountain proposes to further increase our City’s risk.”
Public workshops are being planned by the City to offer to residents and businesses information about the proposed expansion. Details on workshop dates, times and locations will be provided in near future.
On May 28, 2012, Burnaby Council formally expressed their opposition to the proposed Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP), which proposes to develop Burnaby as the primary shipping terminus for the export of heavy crude petroleum products, in addition to the range of light and synthetic petroleum products already being shipped through the existing pipeline.
The proposal by Kinder Morgan to expand its capacity and facilities within Burnaby pose significant risks to Burnaby and its communities, and the surrounding environment, given the urban context of the proposed expansion. The Council report is available here.
Federal and Provincial government approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline system within Burnaby occurred in the early 1950s – a time when the geographic landscape of the municipality was predominantly suburban-rural with a population of approximately 58,000 people. Since that time, Burnaby and the broader Metro Vancouver region has undergone significant urban transformation, and with a population of over 223,000 people, has become the third largest city in British Columbia. While the historic development and operation of petroleum processing, storage, and transport facilities in Burnaby has presented many challenges, the City has worked on behalf of its citizens to manage these developments to ensure that public safety and environmental health issues continue to be raised as a primary concern.
Given the existing and projected urban growth and development of the City and Metro Vancouver region, the risks and impacts associated with the TMEP expansion are exacerbated by the concentration of petroleum storage and shipping activities within the expanding urban region. From an economic (including other port activities and tourism), environmental, public health – quality of life, and social perspective, the impacts of an accident could be catastrophic at both the local and regional level, posing irreparable damage to the economic diversity and viability of a Port-based region, the environment, and the quality of life of its citizens.
On December 16, 2013, Kinder Morgan submitted their formal application to the National Energy Board (NEB) for the TMEP. The proposed project, if approved, would entail expansion of the following Kinder Morgan infrastructure and facilities within Burnaby:
A tripling of the pipeline capacity to ship petroleum products from Alberta to Burnaby, from 300,000 barrels per day (bpd) to 890,000 bpd;
A product focus shift from the current range of light and synthetic crude shipped via the existing line to the shipment of heavy crude petroleum products;
An expansion of the Burnaby Mountain Terminal to from 13 to 26 storage tanks (storage capacity will increase from 1.7 million barrels to 5.6 million barrels);
An expansion of the Westridge Marine Terminal to accommodate up to 3 Aframax tankers at any given time, plus barges; and
An increase in tanker traffic in the Burrard Inlet from 5 to 34 tankers per month.
The TMEP also involves the development of new pipeline corridors through Burnaby, impacting City infrastructure, residential neighbourhoods, schools, commercial corridors and environmentally sensitive areas.
The route that has been indicated to the City of Burnaby for the new pipeline is shown here.
The routing and alignment of the pipeline corridor is not finalized until detailed field studies, survey and engineering design work have been completed. These studies are typically undertaken by the proponent (Kinder Morgan) following approval and issuance of a Certificate from the NEB for the overall project.
With regard to the current Kinder Morgan application to the NEB, the “selected” and “alternate” pipeline study corridors, as presented in the maps produced by Kinder Morgan, only provide a general indication of proposed pipeline routing and alignment through Burnaby. The final routing and alignment of the pipeline could also potentially be outside of the study corridors. The City will continue to monitor information provided regarding pipeline routing through Burnaby, and will provide comments to the NEB on the impacts and implications of each presented option on behalf of Burnaby residents, businesses, property owners, and its communities.
About the TMEP Application to the NEB
Kinder Morgan submitted their application to the National Energy Board (NEB) for the expansion of the Trans Mountain Pipeline system, which is also referenced as the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (TMEP), on December 16, 2013. The 8 volume application can be found here.
The application addresses the filing requirements contained under Part III of the NEB Act and information required under Section 19(1) of the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act, 2012.
As part of Kinder Morgan’s application to the NEB, and in accordance with Section 52 of the NEB Act, they are seeking issuance of a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity (CPCN), which would permit the construction and operation of the proposed expansion.
The Public Hearing process related to the TMEP has been streamlined by the National Energy Board (NEB). The City of Burnaby will continue to monitor and report on the public participation process for this project as it becomes available.
On January 15, 2014, the NEB published an Advisory Notice indicating to the public the opportunity to participate in the Public Hearing for this proposed project. The deadline to submit Applications to Participate is on or before 11:59 PM (MST) on February 12, 2014.
The NEB has also published a List of Issues which they are willing to consider at the Public Hearing in relation to the Kinder Morgan application. This List of Issues can be viewed here.
The official dates and timelines of the NEB Public Hearing are yet to be determined.
Following the NEB Public Hearing, the panel typically releases their decision and the outcome of the hearing is announced in a publication called the Reasons for Decision.
How can Burnaby citizens participate in the NEB Public Hearing Process?
There are two opportunities for the public to participate in the NEB Public Hearing process:
The City of Burnaby would like to hear about your concerns and questions. The City will be gathering all input from citizens, residents, property owners, community groups, and businesses to develop a comprehensive presentation which represents our collective opposition to the National Energy Board.
You can provide your input through the City’s Public Input Form, either online or in paper copy, and/or you can participate in Burnaby’s Public Events on the proposed TMEP.
As a part of the NEB Public Hearing process, the public can submit an Application to Participate in the Public Hearing (available here).
Further information on how to participate and eligibility to participate in the NEB Public Hearing process can be found on the NEB website here.
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