While many communities expressed their anger and frustration following the approval of two major pipelines, one town can breathe a sigh of relief.
Prime Minister Justin Trudeau gave the green light to the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion and Line 3 but rejected plans for the Northern Gateway pipeline.
Kitimat mayor Phillip Germuth, says the rejection was a welcome announcement for their town.
“I wasn’t disappointed at all. I supported the majority of the community that the risks of this project far outweighed the benefits, not only for the potential of if we had an oil spill out on the Douglas Channel but the current standards and regulations in Canada when it comes to leak detection on our diluted bitumen pipelines is woefully inadequate at protecting the environment,” he said.
In 2014, Kitimat residents voted against the project in a referendum, and Germuth says they’re now looking forward to putting it behind them.
“I think it’s a relief for everybody, no matter what side you were on with it. A decision has been made, for us it’s business as usual. We’re going to keep going with all the other potential projects here, working with other investors and proponents looking to develop in Kitimat,”
If approved, the Northern Gateway pipeline would have taken diluted bitumen from Alberta through the Great Bear Rainforest to Kitimat.