B.C. Premier addresses tourism concerns from Kinder Morgan battle

With the B.C. government continuing the fight against Kinder Morgan, some are concerned it will have an effect on tourism from Alberta.

Speaking at a Victoria Chamber luncheon, premier John Horgan says he understands the concerns, but a potential oil spill would have a more lasting impact on tourism in the province. Horgan says he does not believe the Ocean Protection Plan would be sufficient to address a spill.

“I know people come from around the world to enjoy the beauty of our great province,” Horgan said. “I am not convinced that we are prepared to deal with the consequences of a diluted bitumen spill in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, in the Gulf Islands or in the Burrard Inlet. The catastrophic event that could happen would have a significant impact on our tourism economy.”

The concern began in Feb. 2018 when Alberta called for a ban on B.C. wine due to the province’s attempts to block the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain pipeline.

“I believe my responsibilities are…to ensure our pristine environment that is attracting guests in droves is there for all time, and I do not believe in my discussions with the federal government that we are in a position to address a marine spill,” Horgan said.

“I’m not prepared to risk in the current environment our coasts to get diluted bitumen not to a refinery to bring down gas prices to help people, but to send overseas to help somebody else.”

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