Against Port Expansion in the Fraser Estuary BC
APE (Against Port Expansion in the Fraser Estuary BC) is a group of concerned citizens who recognize that plans for container terminal expansion on Roberts Bank (RBT2) will see the loss of globally-significant wetlands and habitat (classified as a Globally Significant Important Bird and Biodiversity Area - IBA) for migratory birds, shorebirds, waterfowl, salmon, herring, crabs and orca whales; degradation of the quality of life for thousands of Lower Mainland residents; and the industrialization of prime agricultural land.
THE FEDERALLY-APPOINTED REVIEW PANEL PUBLISHED ITS REPORT MARCH 27 2020. ON AUGUST 24 THE FEDERAL ENVIRONMENT MINISTER PAUSED THE DECiSiON PROCESS AND ASKED THE PORT FOR MORE INFORMATION. NOW THE PORT SAYS IT WILL NOT PROVIDE THE INFORMATION UNTIL SUMMER 2021. WHAT IS THE PORT AFRAID OF? WHAT IS IT TRYING TO HIDE? WHY IS THE PORT NOW HIRING AN ENGINEER TO MANAGE INFRASTRUCTURE DELIVERY AND GET CONTRACTS SIGNED FOR A T2 OPERATOR? SO MANY QUESTIONS, NO ANSWERS FROM THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT.
WE NEED YOUR HELP. NOW IS THE IDEAL TIME TO URGE THE FEDERAL GOVERNMENT TO REJECT ROBERTS BANK TERMINAL 2
The e-petition sponsored by Paul Manly MP for Nanaimo-Ladysmith closed December 2 2020 with 1861 signatures. Those signing were all across Canada.
It has been certified and will now be placed before the House of Commons. It calls on the Government of Canada to
DENY APPROVAL FOR ROBERTS BANK TERMINAL 2.
IF YOU MISSED SIGNING WE HAVE PUT UP ANOTHER PETITION.
See what others are doing to stop RBT2:
1. Fraser Delta in the International spotlight. Birdlife Interantional has joined the fight to stop RBT2.
2. A video by Ranincoast Conservation
3. Natural Legacies versus Waste
4. Fraser Voices
5. Georgia Strait Alliance
House of Commons Petition to STOP RBT2
On December 9 2020 MP Paul Manly presented e-petition 2828 to the House of Commons asking government to deny approval for the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project.
In doing so he made the following statement:
"Mr. Speaker, it is an honour and privilege to table e-petition 2828, which has 1,861 signatures.
The petitioners are concerned about the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority proposal to build another container terminal at Roberts Bank, creating a massive new man-made island the size of 150 football fields.
The petitioners call upon the Government of Canada to maintain the environmental integrity of the Roberts Bank ecosystem for migratory birds, the endangered southern resident killer whales and other wildlife. They ask the government to deny approval of the Roberts Bank container terminal 2 project".
Watch the petition being presented here:
Which part of NO does the Port of Vancover not understand?
NO to Roberts Bank Terminal 2:
- Said the city of Delta
- Said the city of Richmond
- Said almost 2000 Canadians who signed the House of Commons Petition
- Said Birds Canada, BC Nature, Birdlife International, Western Hemisphere Shorebird Reserve Network, David Suzuki Foundation, Raincoast Conservation, Georgia Strait Alliance, Nature Canada, amongst the 40 environmental and other groups opposed to RBT2.
- Said Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC) scientists, stating that “ECCC characterizes the Project's residual adverse impacts on biofilm due to predicted changes in salinity as potentially high in magnitude, permanent, irreversible, and, continuous”. These same scientists told the Review Panel that “ECCC's confidence in the ( Port’s) Environmental Impact Statement's predictions is characterized as low. In particular, impacts to biofilm could potentially implicate the long-term viability of Western Sandpipers as a species (IBID). ECCC similarly characterizes impacts to Western Sandpipers as potentially high in magnitude, permanent, irreversible, and continuous”.
It does not get any cleaner than that.
Prime Minister Trudeau, Minister of Environment Wilkinson and Members of Cabinet please now do the right thing:
- Protect the unique Roberts Bank environment,
- Protect birds, fishes, Southern Resident Killer Whales and other wildlife that all rely on the natural habitat and wetlands of Roberts Bank,
- Prevent species degradation from further port development,
- Prevent harm to residents living near Roberts Bank,
- Prevent further traffic congestion caused by port truck traffic,
- Stop the Port spending $4 billion of taxpayer funds, and
Tell Vancouver Fraser Port Authority the RBT2 project is cancelled.
E-Petition opposing RBT2 to go to the House of Commons
The House of Commons e-petition - to stop Roberts Bank Terminal 2 (RBT2) from being built - closed on December 2 2020, with a record 1860 signatures. Those signing were from across Canada. Eight provinces and two territories all had signatories.
The e-petition has been certified by the clerk of petitions and is ready for presentation to the House of Commons.
The timing could not be better. There is a real convergence of increasing opposition to RBT2:
1. The Port of Vancouver has now said it will not respond to the Environment minister’s request for more information on RBT2 until next summer. They are effectively holding the environment hostage and there are increasing calls for the whole process to be ended.
2. The cities of Delta and Richmond have both voted to oppose Terminal 2.
3. A just released study on marine issues investigating Southern Resident Killer Whales deaths:
4. Scientific papers identifying, quantifying and highlighting the risks to the environment - the latest one from UBC co-authored by Dr. Tara Martin is featured in the November28/29 2020 Globe and Mail.
5. A rival operation to RBT2 is in the planning stages under federal and provincial environmental assessment. Deltaport operator Global Container Terminals is proposing to add a 4th berth to its current facility. https://iaac-aeic.gc.ca/050/evaluations/proj/81010?id=ae12a115-f065-4990-8142-a6610e5879cd
The Lower Fraser River, its estuary and the southern Salish sea cannot handle any more port development with the:
- Associated marine traffic,
- Environmental degradation and,
- Many negative air, noise and light pollution effects that will result for both wildlife and area residents.
The Port of Vancouver is holding the environment hostage by its refusal to answer additional questions regarding RBT2. This makes a nonsense out of Canada's environmental legislation and it must be stopped.
It is time for the Federal Government to recognize the Port of Vancouver’s Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project must never be built.So please write to the Environment Minister email@example.com and call on him to use his powers under the environmental legislation to deny project approval.If you wish you can also sign a new e-petition which calls on both the federal and provincial governments to halt the RBT2 project.You will find it here:
Fraser River and Delta - 102 Species at Risk
The Globe and Mail contains an excellent article on the dire straits of the Fraser River and its Delta.
The G and M article is based on a joint project of researchers at the University of Victoria and University of British Columbia.
Check out a short video on the work here:
The Globe and Mail article quotes a Port spokesperson as saying, “The terminal would generate hundreds of millions of dollars a year” then going on to say if the terminal development is approved, “it will be built in a way that upholds our mandate to protect the environment.”
What the article does not mention is Environment Canada scientists’ concerns - they disagree with the Port science, warning that further port development on Roberts Bank puts millions of shorebirds and other species at risk.
It is unfortunate the Globe and Mail article does not reference the many concerns raised about the Port of Vancouver’s terminal 2 project by the scientists from Environment and Climate Change Canada (ECCC). As far back as 2005 they had stated that further port development on Roberts Bank risks breaking the chain of the Pacific Flyway (for millions of migratory birds). Most recently these scientists have stated their research demonstrates that if Roberts Bank Terminal 2 were to be built the residual adverse effects on shorebirds in general and migratory birds in particular could implicate their long-term viability. In particular the scientists say “ECCC similarly characterizes impacts to Western Sandpipers as potentially high in magnitude, permanent, irreversible, and continuous”. (February 12 2018: Letter from Environment Canada to The Review Panel, Roberts Bank Terminal 2 Project).
As Dr. Martin co-author of the study states at the end of the Globe and Mail article:
"the scientific evidence underscores why the estuary is now facing the most pivotal moment in its history. If we continue business as usual then we’ll lose most of these species,” she said. “Or we have an opportunity to change and develop in a way that averts the loss of future economic opportunities from having such a bio-diverse region.”
- The cities of Delta and Richmond are both opposing the RBT2 project.
- The Port of Vancouver recently announced that that they will not provide the additional information for RBT2 to the Environment Minister until the summer of 2021. They are effectively holding the process hostage with their repeated delays and obfuscation.
- Our e-petition, which calls for RBT2 to be stopped, has garnered close to 1700 signatures. It closes next week and then will be presented to the House of Commons
RBT2 Opposition Growing
Opposition to the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority's Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project continues to grow.
The House of Commons Petition has over 1400 signatures with more being added everyday. That opposition is countrywide - eight Provinces and two Territories.
More than twenty groups, some with thousands of members, have voiced their opposition to RBT2.
Many have written to the Federal Government. Here is a recent letter from the Vancouver Unitarians. Their letter, addressed to the Prime Minister as well as the Environment and Transport Ministers, was also sent to all Vancouver area MPs.
If you have not yet signed it, please do so before the deadline.