Thursday, October 13, 2016

Councillor Thorkelson to call on City Council to withhold support for Pacific NorthWest project until Six local conditions are met

Councillor Thorkelson is bringing some
issues related to the Pacific Northwest
LNG project back to Council for
discussion at their October 24 session
A last minute addition to the Agenda for Tuesday's City Council meeting will set the table for what should be an interesting discussion at the next Council session of October 24th.

Offering up another opportunity for City Council members to share some thoughts on LNG development on the North Coast.

At Tuesday's Council session, Councillor Joy Thorkelson served notice to Council that she would be bringing the topic of Pacific NorthWest LNG's Lelu Island project to the table for further discussion and a possible vote.

After a fairly lengthy preamble related to the components of the motion to be considered, which highlighted some of her concerns when it comes to the proposed development, the City Councillor advised that she would be bringing the issue to the next Council meeting.

From the outline of her motion, indications are that she will be asking that City Council declare that it will not support the Pacific NorthWest LNG project until the following local conditions are met.

1 -- The project is relocated to another area not in the estuary of the Skeena River, one industry should not put another at risk and our city should with a remain diversified economy.

2 -- The project must consult with the areas local governments and residents, as well as First Nations

3 -- The city's water supply is monitored and a specific set of responses agreed to by the City are in place to rectify any increase in acidification or eutrophication

4 -- Negative economic, or social consequences will be identified by the City and Pacific NorthWest LNG prior to the project going ahead and solutions agreeable to the city are identified.

5 --  Adequate contributions agreed to by the City of Prince Rupert for rebuilding and maintaining Prince Rupert's infrastructure are identified and scheduled.

6 --  Alternative clean forms of energy are identified and their development are committed to by Pacific NorthWest LNG.

The introduction of the notice, puts the issue on the table for consideration at the October 24th session and will give the City's five other councillors and Mayor Brain, two weeks to review their own personal thoughts on LNG development and the Pacific Northwest LNG project in particular.

It will also provide the residents of Prince Rupert a good opportunity to learn where each of their council members stand when it come to the Lelu Island project, should they choose to participate in the discussion and offer some public comments on the themes raised by the long time Council member.

Depending on how Council decides to handle the motion, there could also be a need for a vote, which would put Council members on record when it comes to Councillor Thorkelson six areas of concern.

Later on at Tuesday's Council Session, Mayor Brain delivered his thoughts on the current nature of the city's engagement with Pacific NorthWest LNG, outlining some of the areas where the city and the company representatives continue to hold discussions on.

He observed that the city is currently at the table and has been over the last two years to ensure that the city's and the communities needs are taken care.

Noting that the city has made some asks in its Environmental Assessment, as well as infrastructure and social components, the Mayor observed that the city will continue to discuss those topics with Pacific NorthWest to ensure that everything is taken care of and is above board for this community.

According to the Mayor, the next meeting between the City and Pacific Northwest is set to take place next week.

Mayor Brain also observed that while the project is technically in Port Edward, the city is looking to secure an Impacts Benefits Agreement to address the city's needs through that agreement.

He provided some further background on the city's work on the LNG file, outlining that the city has directed a staff member to analyze the recent Environmental Assessment and a number of reports will be generated to outline whether the city's concerns have been addressed and what the impacts may be.

He also noted that current indications suggest that it will be at least six to eight months or so before the proponent, Petronas/Pacific NorthWest makes any Final Investment Decision related to the project which allows the city to continue the dialogue with Pacific NorthWest LNG.

You can review both Councillor Thorkelson's motion and Mayor Brain's comments on LNG from the City's Video Archive of the Tuesday evening session.

Councillor Thorkelson introduces her motion at the 26 minute mark of the meeting, while Mayor Brain's overview of the current discussions comes up at the just after the 34 minute mark.

More background on the Pacific NorthWest LNG project can be found on our archive page here.

A larger overview related to Tuesday's City Council session are available on our Council Timeline feature, while our City Council Archive page provides more information on the many issues that City Council discuss during the year.

No comments:

Post a Comment