Kamloops This Week
May 29, 2015
The Thompson-Nicola Regional District (TNRD) supports the twinning of the Trans-Mountain Pipeline.
The board of directors overwhelmingly approved a motion of support for the project during its meeting yesterday.
Four directors were opposed — alternate director Donovan Cavers, mayor of Lytton Jessoa Lightfoot, Area I director Steven Rice and Area M director Randy Murray.
The motion was brought to the board by Sun Peaks Mayor Al Raine.
“I think it is important for the TNRD to take a position on this issue,” Raine said, noting the products are passing through the corridor regardless and it is important to ensure they are doing so in the safest possible manner.
“I guess one could argue about all the issues with the environment, the tar sands,” he continued.
“That’s not the issue with my motion. They’re going to be passing through the corridor, the pipeline is the best foreseeable option.”
Kamloops city Coun. Ken Christian seconded the motion.
“Irrespective of how we feel about fossil fuels, we are still using fossil fuels,” he said. “We have to be conscious that, in a global society using them, there is an increasing need. Getting these products to people should be done in the safest way.”
For Christian, that is the pipeline.
Kamloops Coun. Arjun Singh also spoke in support of the motion, though he noted his support was not of continuing to use the pipeline in perpetuity.
Cavers was the lone Kamloops councillor to speak against the motion.
“There’s not much reason for the TNRD to be taking a stand on the political hot potato,” he said.
“The elephant in the room is climate change. In general, our society needs to be moving away from using more and more fossil fuels.”
He noted supporting the pipeline was, in essence, supporting 60 years of increased fossil fuel usage.
Kamloops area director Mel Rothenburger recused himself from the vote as the pipeline passes through his property.
NOTE: Electoral Area N Director Herb Graham declared a conflict of interest for the same reason I did and also excused himself from the debate and vote.