NEWS RELEASE · 3rd September 2010
Pipe Up Against Enbridge
Enbridge’s Michele Perret and Kevin Brown presented to Smithers Town Council on August 24, 2010, and got a bit of a surprise.
The gallery was packed with over 50 members of the public in attendance, with protesters outside dressed as oil spill cleanup workers handing out leaflets, and members of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation on hand with large banners.
Many expected Perret to spend some time explaining what caused Enbridge’s massive oil spill in Michigan last month, but her presentation was extremely short and lacking in detail. As for the Michigan spill, she admitted Enbridge had what she called a leak, that they had turned off the pipeline “immediately”, and that they were cleaning it up. Then she went on at length about the jobs cleaning up the oil spill, and the jobs that Northern Gateway would create.
Partway through her presentation, Perret sounded a bit like former BP CEO Tony Hayward when she noted that tragically her holidays were supposed to have started on the same day the Michigan spill occurred. (Among Hayward’s many blunders was his infamous offhand statement that, “There’s no one who wants this over more than I do. I’d like my life back.”)
The short presentation left many questions unanswered. Here are a just a few related to Enbridge’s Michigan disaster:
- How did Enbridge discover there was a leak in the pipeline?
- When had that particular section of pipeline been last inspected?
- What percentage of the oil spilled has been recovered and what happens to the oil that Enbridge can’t recover?
- Why does the EPA estimate of the spill size differ from Enbridge’s estimate?
Many in the crowd seemed ready to ask these kinds of questions, but they didn’t get a chance. Directly after Perret finished, a member of the Wet’suwet’en named Toghestiy stood and spoke. He said the Wet’suwet’en opposed the Enbridge pipeline, and that Perret and Brown were trespassing on their territory. He then handed Brown an eagle feather, which he explained was a traditional warning that a trespass had occurred, and said that if they trespassed again they would be dealt with according to traditional Wet’suwet’en law.
Both Perret and Brown quickly packed their bags and fled the building.
Comment by Bryan Notheisz on 5th September 2010
They quickly packed their bags and fled the building?? Come on, if there is to be a useful commentary and discussion on this, whether you are pro or con, silly statements like this don't help.
Comment by Angie Campbell on 4th September 2010
Awesome job to the Wet’suwet’en First Nation for taking a stand. As Native people we have been pushed around long enough.
Well said Stacey!!!
As for Mr. Wonderful, Native people contribute to society everyday. As a native person I am NOT going to run around and try to please all the wonderful people out there. You will never be happy with anything we do...
No exports of any kind!
Comment by Rudi Peters on 4th September 2010
The fact that some people want to place a pipeline and export oil is nothing more than a demonstration of their absolute stupidity. Why are we not processing this stuff in our own country? Yet better let's just start to cut back on the usage of the stuff.
Why are we exporting any raw material, take your pick. We as a country should not export any raw material, period. Without the addition of value to a material, and it does not matter what it is, it should never be allowed to be exported. And, if a company insists on exporting a raw material than there should be such an export tax imposed on in that it would become financially unsupportable.
The only way that we will fix our economic woes in this country is to take our collective heads out of our backsides and start to realize that we are shipping our jobs overseas, and that must stop. We must start processing our raw material at home and ship the finished product overseas.
Comment by Stacey Tyers on 4th September 2010
I've read soe pretty one sided comments from you, and chose to ignore them. Mostly, because I realize you do not actually want to hear what other people have to say. Which is reflected time and time again in your posts. But this blatant disregard for first nations, the ignorance of your comment are just too much to shrug my shoulders at.
Your assumption and implication that First Nations do not contribute to society? Please, spare me the "that isn't what I said" your tone and wording are all there, and we know what you meant, regardless of how you chose to say it. It is offensive.
I would 100% opt for cultural contribution and no tax money, than tax money and a contribution of hate.
I'm just stunned, honestly.
More often than not, people use rules when they benefit them. Government, police, etc... This isn't a new concept at all. Why would you issue someone a warning of trespassing if you don't FEEL trespassed against? You save that moment for when someone unwelcome comes into your home and offends you.
If you are home and your friend walks in you will greet them with hellos. If you are home and a stranger or burgalar are there, you're not going to invite them for tea.
Interesting scenario possible.
Comment by Helmut Giesbrecht on 4th September 2010
The Provincial Campbell government gave itself the power to overrule any municipal or regional district decision if they, the developer friendly government, decided it was in the province's interest. It would be very interesting if they now decided it applied to the Wet’suwet’en lands as well. BC still has not signed Treaties with its First Nations in the region effected by an Enbridge pipeline. It could become another court challenge and I wouldn't bet on the outcome.
That being said, it makes no sense whatsoever to me that we should help in exporting a valuable finite resource for the sake of a few jobs. That goes for log exports as well. That we would risk damage to our environment to do so is downright stupid. If we can't use the timber and gas in B.C. or Canada as a whole, leave it where it is. Future generations will hopefully have more sense than to do what we are thinking about doing
Comment by Walter Fricke on 4th September 2010
This is great news. Enbridge must realize they are not welcome anywhere along the proposed pipeline route.
I keep telling myself that this pipeline, if allowed to go ahead, would create jobs for existing pipeliners, and very few locals. The crew camps will most likely come from Alberta, with supplies coming from Prince George , or most probably Edmonton. Most locals will be shut out of the hiring. Alberta and China stand to gain the most, and British Columbia is endangering the natural wealth of the areas involved for the least economic benefit.
Comment by James Ippel on 3rd September 2010
Great comments people. I was under the impression we lived in a country called Canada, where all people were equal. I guess I was mislead.
All of a suddem we have a second set of standards put forward by a minority, who only use the laws of the land when it is to their advantage.
Maybe the whites should take the stand that if you contribute to society, you will receive from society. Failing that, you are on your own. We have a few militants who give the rest of the Native People a bad name.
Many people oppose Enbridge, many people support Enbridge. Threats are not necessary, and if push comes to shove, the outcome could very well be disasterous. Who is in the majority?????
Comment by Rudi Peters on 3rd September 2010
Them getting a notice of trespassing, I love it. If it occurs again they will be dealt with according to We'suwet'en law, if this entails scalping I am all up for it. It is about time someone started to deal with Enbridge in an appropriate manner.
Comment by Eric gavelin on 3rd September 2010
Awesome I would love to see these people recieve a good ole fashoned traditional beating!!!.
Go home you're not wanted!