FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Excitement Building for Victoria’s March and Rally for an Oil-Free Coast
VICTORIA – Greater Victoria residents and families are gearing up to march to the B.C. Legislature on May 10 to send a loud, clear message to governments: they will not allow the Enbridge and Kinder Morgan pipeline and tanker proposals to jeopardize their communities and their climate.
In June, the federal cabinet is expected to make a decision on Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline and tankers proposal, while hundreds of British Columbians have been denied the right to participate in hearings for Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain project.
“The federal government champions fossil fuel infrastructure like it will never go out of style, ignoring the science and demonizing dissent,” said Caitlyn Vernon of Sierra Club BC. “First Nations, municipalities, the BC government and a majority of British Columbians have already said no to Enbridge’s dangerous proposal, so we are gathering together on May 10 to remind the federal government that no means no, there is no social license for Enbridge in B.C. We can do better than jobs in oil spill response; we can say yes to green jobs instead.”
A recent poll found more than three-quarters of British Columbians feel we should transition away from fossil fuels to cleaner sources of energy in order to prevent climate change from getting worse.
“When we export tar sands oil, we are importing climate disaster,” said Torrance Coste of the Wilderness Committee. “The risks and consequences of spills are far too high, and the impacts of climate change are already here and will only get worse if we invest in these fossil fuel projects and accelerate the amount of greenhouse gases we pump into the atmosphere.”
Victoria Mayor Dean Fortin will be a featured speaker at a rally on the front lawn of the legislature.
“An oil spill on Victoria’s shores would be devastating to our environment, to our economy and to our quality of life,” said Mayor Fortin. “Thousands of local jobs in sectors like tourism and outdoor recreation depend directly on our stunning natural setting, to say nothing of the ecological devastation that would result from any accident.”
Kinder Morgan’s application to the National Energy Board claimed there would be potential economic benefits and jobs from oil spills. British Columbians deserve safe, stable jobs in a vibrant green economy, not hazardous, toxic work struggling to remove heavy oil from beaches and seabirds.
Other speakers at the legislature include: Melissa Moroz, Unifor Local 467, and Caitlyn Vernon, Sierra Club BC. Entertainment at Beacon Hill Park will include: Felicia Harding, lead singer of Isobel Trigger (recently named The Zone’s Band of the Month) and Victoria Poetry Slam champion Jeremy Loveday.
The Victoria event is part of a National Day of Action that will include events across the country.
12:30 p.m. Music and activities at Beacon Hill Park bandshell (including face-painting for children)
1:45 p.m. March from Beacon Hill Park bandshell to B.C. Legislature
2:30 p.m. Rally at Legislature
Campaigns Director, Sierra Club BC
Office: 250-386-5255, ext 222
Vancouver Island Campaigner, Wilderness Committee
Executive Assistant to the Mayor, City of Victoria
Defend Our Climate National Day of Action website: www.defendourclimate.ca