May 28 2012 » News Clippings » Straight.com
Let’s Leave the Dirty Business of Coal Exports Behind Us
As public opposition to tanker traffic on the B.C. coast continues to grow louder, another fossil-fuel industry is quietly moving ahead with its own expansion plans.
Between B.C., Washington, and Oregon, there are proposals for eight brand spanking new coal-export ports, and additional plans to double output at three existing facilities.
These proposals represent a massive increase in our carbon footprint. Once burned, the coal from our fair province’s ports would add over 200 millions tonnes of carbon pollution to the atmosphere every year. Whether used to generate power or as a part of the steelmaking process, the burning of coal for energy is one of the biggest contributors to global warming. B.C.’s growing contribution to this industry represents a dire threat to our collective future.
On Vancouver Island, there are plans for three new coal mines in the Comox Valley and a coal port in Port Alberni. Local opposition has highlighted the impact this proposal would have on drinking water and the Fanny Bay Oyster industry . In the Peace River region of northeastern B.C., critical habitat for the threatened caribou herds that were once plentiful in the region are threatened by new coal mines. The thriving and mighty salmon rivers of the Sacred Headwaters are also at risk from a giant open pit mine proposal. And additional proposals in the Kooteneys will intensify the existing mining activity in the Elk Valley, pushing into intact wilderness. Read more...