PLANT

Reinstate coast guard, ban north coast oil tankers: Trudeau to ministers

Environmental and safety advocates have decried the former Conservative government's handling of marine issues.


VANCOUVER — Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is moving forward with Liberal campaign promises to re-open the Kitsilano coast guard base in Vancouver and ban oil tanker traffic on BC’s north coast.

Trudeau has included the directives in a mandate letter to the federal minister responsible for fisheries and oceans and the minister of transport.

The two pledges are significant in the West, where environmental and safety advocates have decried the former Conservative government’s handling of marine issues.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson applauded the decision to re-open the coast guard base, calling it one of the most important public safety resources for the city’s busy harbour.

Formalizing a 2010 tanker moratorium would put the Dixon Entrance, Hecate Strait and Queen Charlotte Sound off limits to tanker traffic as part of the government’s goal to protect ecologically sensitive areas.

The moratorium is also expected to effectively kill any pipeline project through the area, including the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline.

© 2015 The Canadian Press

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