Editor, The News:
Re: Planned oil surge highlights tanker risks (The News, April 20).
Black Press reporter Jeff Nagel has done a nice job of showing just how safely oil tanker traffic can and is being moved through B.C. waters.
A reasonable person would think that we can continue to move this traffic without any severe consequences.
Unfortunately, the unreasonable amongst us seem to believe that just because bad things have happened in the past they will happen in the future.
I’m not sure how they rationalize getting out of bed in the morning, driving on a busy highway or flying off on a holiday as people have slipped and died in the shower, crashed cars and perished in plane accidents yet life carries on.
There also seems to be a misconception that the sole purpose of environmental reviews is to stop projects from going ahead. This can create missed opportunities to ensure that the review covers all possible areas of concern and finds realistic remedies for any deficiencies that have been identified.
Then there’s the matter of, for want of better words, grandiose Nimbyism, where people will gladly heat the hot water for that shower, drive their cars and take that long distance vacation as long as the energy required to do this is found in somebody else’s back yard.
A tad hypocritical, don’t you think?
Certainly accidents can happen, but most major oil spills have occurred on the high seas or at least been directly exposed to them while traversing a coastline.
These disasters have usually involved the vessel being ripped apart by wave action while either at sea or washed up on shore. That is unlikely to occur in our inland waters.
Mr. Nagel listed 245 times that tanker traffic has moved through local waters over a five-year period. It boggles the mind as to just how many tankers and tanker barges have actually moved over these same waters without major incidence since the inception of said tanker traffic.
Bring on the tankers, but by all means, make sure the review process does the job it is supposed to do, which is to ensure that the movement of these ships and the operation of all infrastructures revolving around them is carried out to the best of our ability.
You just can’t ask for anything more, realistically?