A group of Canadian doctors hopes to throw up another roadblock to the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion, asking Ottawa to assess the project based on its potential long term health impacts.
They’ve produced a report outlining some of their chief health concerns, including toxic emissions from tank farms, and the potential impacts of a tanker spill.
That latter concern is a major one to physician and SFU health sciences professor Dr. Tim Takaro, who says Kinder Morgan’s proposal only looks at a smaller case spill in a more remote environment.
“What they need to do is consider the worst case, because the worst case in Vancouver of course is a spill in the marine environment in Burrard inlet which would expose thousands if not millions of people.”
Takaro says such an event could produce noxious benzene gas, having both short term consequences and has been linked to Leukemia.
He says they’re also asking Ottawa to look at the health impacts of climate change.
“Deaths from heat stroke. We have more fires around the province, water shortages, all having health imacts. They will be felt in the next decade, but they are going to be even more profound in the decades to come.”
Takaro says the group is calling on the Trudeau Liberals to conduct a Cumulative Health Impact Assessment on the project that would look at both immediate and long term health concerns before giving it the green light.
Cabinet is expected to make that decision by early December.