APE - Against Port Expansion in Delta, BC
Say NO to Roberts Bank Terminal 2
Watch Video To See Why!
APE - Against Port Expansion in Delta, BC
Say NO to Roberts Bank Terminal 2
Watch Video To See Why!
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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.

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HERE IS THE CURRENT RBT2 STATUS:

  • MAR. 27 2020 THE FEDERALLY-APPOINTED REVIEW PANEL PUBLISHED ITS REPORT IDENTIFIYING SIGNIFICANT ADVERSE ENVIRONMENTAL EFFECTS IN MANY AREAS SHOULD RBT2 BE BUILT.
  • AUG. 24 2020 THE FEDERAL ENVIRONMENT MINISTER PAUSED THE DECiSiON PROCESS AND ASKED THE PORT FOR MORE INFORMATION. 
  • AUG. 28 THE PORT SAYS IT WILL HAVE COMPLETED GATHERING THE ADDITIONAL INFORMATION PRIOR TO YEAR END
  • NOV. 5 THE PORT SAYS IT WILL NOT PROVIDE THE INFORMATION UNTIL SUMMER 2021.

SO MANY QUESTIONS:

  • 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.

E-petition 2828 sponsored by Paul Manly MP for Nanaimo-Ladysmith called on the government to reject RBT2. It closed December 2 2020 with 1861 signatures.

https://petitions.ourcommons.ca/en/Petition/Details?Petition=e-2828

Those signing were all across Canada.  Eight provinces and two territories all had signatories. It was certified and presented to the House of Commons on Dec. 9 2020. The govenrment responded January 26 2021, refusing to reject RBT2 at this time, saying the decsion will be based on science facts and evidence.

The govenrment already has the science, facts and evidence. Its own scientists say RBT2 will result in significant adverse environmental effects that cannot be mitigated. How much more does the government need to reject this project?

And so the saga continues, seven years and counting, wasting more taxpayer funds.

KEEP THE PRESSURE ON THE FEDERAL GOVENRMENT

TELL THEM YOU WILL NOT ACCEPT RBT2 BEING APPROVED

IF YOU MISSED SIGNING WE HAVE PUT UP ANOTHER PETITION.

Click Here to Sign the 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.
https://www.birdlife.org/worldwide/news/waterfowl-winter-refuge-fraser-river-delta-risks-being-lost-forever?utm_source=BirdLife+International+News+Notifications&utm_campaign=a1bb67f58b-Summary_news_notification&utm_medium=email&utm_term=0_4122f13b8a-a1bb67f58b-131704081&mc_cid=a1bb67f58b&mc_eid=0757e28fcf 

2. A video by Ranincoast Conservation
https://youtu.be/HkKLY3P2_ys

3. Natural Legacies versus Waste

https://gardencitylands.wordpress.com/2020/04/04/fraser-voices-urges-federal-government-to-reject-roberts-bank-port-expansion/

4. Fraser Voices

https://www.facebook.com/FraserVoices/posts/2525873930958632?__cft__[0]=AZUdM4gLQGuLAuiIVb_6PxF5BNrdBoz4KiElrrlqVoUBShwuJp6UHSY5mWAGz0etwKLQsE10_Ss-qK7aGDQemFBPCb8nyQsjtbRBGMWEMaqncH-9Dc-WYdwptkuZASF4OsN487dcEmp0wBKuk9JfpC8C0GMYxI1uj79xp-tiD_FXKA&__tn__=%2CO%2CP-R

5. Georgia Strait Alliance 

https://georgiastrait.org/work/species-at-risk/proposed-terminal-2-deltaport-expansion-2/

One of the Worst Environmental Assessments – Ever

One of the Worst Environmental Assessments – Ever 

The Environmental Assessment for the Vancouver Fraser Port Authority's Roberts Bank Container Terminal 2 project has been ongoing for eight years. It has been a monumental failure:

  • Failure to recognize the environmental importance of Roberts Bank at the mouth of the Fraser Estuary. This site should never have been chosen in the first place.
  • Environmental assessment carried out under legislation brought in by Stephen Harper’s government in 2012, with fewer, less stringent protections for natural habitat, and flawed review procedures with too many loopholes.
  • A heavily flawed environmental assessment by a federally appointed Review Panel, with the Port Authority having far too much sway over how the assessment was carried out.
  • No cumulative effects assessment, despite significant industrialization of the Lower Fraser and estuary, with a number of port and industrial projects already under development and more planned.
  • Failure to recognize independent and peer-reviewed science when considering the effects of the terminal’s man-made island on biofilm.
  • Government scientists’ concerns, muzzled, downplayed, and given insufficient recognition and weight in the Panel’s decision making
  • No recognition of the precautionary principle. 
  • No risk analysis of vulnerable or endangered wildlife species, such as salmon, the southern resident killer whale, western sandpiper.
  • No analysis of the Salish Sea’s navigation channels to determine their practical capacity in terms of vessel movements, by day, month or year.
  • No impact and effects analysis of increased road and rail traffic required to service the new terminal, with the negative effects on communities in the Lower Mainland, including increased air, noise, and light pollution that threatens human health and cannot be mitigated.
  • Refusal to recognize the federal government report that determined no further port expansion to take place in Vancouver until Prince Rupert’s expansion potential has been maximized.
  • No independent analysis of the Port’s claims that Canada is running out of west coast container terminal capacity, especially given the concrete evidence that significant terminal expansions are being planned in Prince Rupert that obviate the need for the Roberts Bank terminal.
  • Far too much weight given to mitigation and offsite habitat offsetting with no evidence these will be effective or in any significant measure compensate for the environmental damage done to the Roberts Bank ecosystem.
  • Failure to assess sub tidal wetlands and cumulative effects on wetlands and wetland functions, including the failure to properly assess shorebirds, shorebird habitat and the importance of biofilm to the food web
  • Failure to recognize the significant risk, where federal government scientists warned as far back as 2005 that this development will break the chain of the Pacific Flyway for migratory birds.
  • Abrogation of federal government commitments to protect wetland habitats and functions.
  • The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority is out of control with the federal government taking a laissez faire approach to its oversight.

The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority claims - without any evidence in support -  this project is in the public interest. This despite three cities - Richmond, Delta and White Rock - having expressed opposition to the project with the federal government, as well as over 40 environmental and other groups that also oppose building another container terminal on Roberts Bank.

All this and more is contained in this report

Multiple_Failures_in_the_Environmental_Assessment_of_The_Roberts_Bank_Container_Terminal_2_Project.pdf

Read also this recent Boundary Bay Conservation Committee report sent to the federal and provinical governments as well as mayors in Metro Vancouver.

Irreversible_Harm_to_Fraser_Estuary.pdf

Why Minister Wilkinson, Environment and Climate Change Canada saw the need to request additional information from the Port of Vancouver remains a mystery. The evidence is compelling – The Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project will result in significant adverse environmental effects that cannot be mitigated. The Review Panel said that. Government scientists said that. Peer-reviewed science, published in recognized science journals, says that. Independent experts in wetlands and wetland functions have said that. 

With the federal government having turned down a container port expansion project in Quebec on environmental grounds there are now compelling reasons to reject Roberts Bank Terminal 2. 

It is time for the federal government to act and state: 

“ Building Roberts Bank Terminal 2 presents potential significant direct and cumulative adverse environmental effects on Roberts Bank and in the Fraser Estuary. The Project is not justified in the circumstances and therefore project approval is denied”.

 

Save the Fraser Estuary by Stopping Roberts Bank Terminal 2

For how much longer is the Port of Vancouver going to continue spinning misinformation that Roberts Bank Terminal 2 is environmentally sustainable and is the only solution to satisfy Canada’s container trading needs?

 At its recent Annual General Meeting the Port of Vancouver continued with its misinformation regarding the environmental impacts of it’s Roberts Bank Container Terminal 2 (RBT2) project and the business need for more container capacity on the Canadian West Coast.

In answer to this question at the meeting:
“The Fraser estuary is on the bank of collapse, several new research studies in the media are demonstrating it. Why is the port of Vancouver persisting with its $3.5 billion plus environmentally disastrous RBT2 when both B.C. container terminal operators GCT and DP World have proposed environmentally sustainable terminal expansions?"

The Port Senior Management responded that the terminal would be built in deep water well away from shores and habitats. That is irrelevant

By building this huge man made island - the size of 250 football fields - they will alter tidal flows, water temperature and salinity. It is the salinity and its fluctuations that produce the fatty acid rich diatoms in the biofilm on the mudflats that is an essential food source for millions of birds and other wildlife. That man-made island lessens the fluctuations in salinity and the biofilm will no longer have the richness and the polyunsaturated fatty acids and Omega 3 that the birds need. This could well lead to the extinction of the Western Sandpipers that rely on it when they stop to refuel on their way to their arctic breeding grounds. 

In answer to another question:
“The impacts of a future potential RBT2 development on the ecosystem within the Salish Sea will be devastating. How is the Port reconciling this reality against its intention to continue with its pursuit of the new terminal?”

Port senior management stated that the additional information they are preparing for the Environment Minister shows that this project can be built and operate in ways that can mitigate environmental impacts. They went on to state: “By the time terminal 2 is complete, we are going to be leaving a legacy of environmental benefits behind as a result of the project”.

Nonsense!

The government’s own scientists are insistent, stating this project will result in significant adverse environmental effects that cannot be mitigated. They told the Environmental Assessment Panel the project’s impacts on biofilm  “are anticipated to be high in magnitude, permanent, irreversible, and continuous”. In other words, immitigable

There is no point in the Port providing more of its paid-for consultants’ developed science to the Minister. None of that science has been published in peer-reviewed science journals and much of it runs counter to the scientific community’s findings that the Fraser Estuary is part of an already observed and wider biodiversity collapse in the Salish Sea, driven by projects like Roberts Bank Terminal 2. 

Port senior management continue to misinform the public, policy makers and politicians In terms of a business need for RBT2. Port senior management claims RBT2 is the only project to meet Canada’s needs by the end of the 2020s. 

That is patently false information.  

At a recent presentation DP World, the operator of the Vancouver Centerm, Fraser Surrey Docks and Prince Rupert container terminals stated they will:

      1. Continue to operate the Fraser Surrey Docks container terminal beyond 2023 (The Port says the terminal will decline because of limitations in the River).

       2. By 2022 finish expansion of the Centerm Terminal to provide 1.5 million Container (TEU) capacity.

        3. By 2023 expand Prince Rupert's Fairview Terminal to provide 1.8-million (TEU) capacity. 

       4. Between 2028 and 2030 bring a second terminal (On South Kaien Island) into operation giving Prince Rupert container capacity in excess of 5 million TEUs. 

Taken together and adding in Global Container Terminals capacities at Deltaport and Vanterm in the inner harbour, West Coast Canada will have in excess of 10 million container terminal capacity by 2030. The Port of Vancouver’s own recently updated forecast shows West Coast Canada terminals will handle between 7.5 to 8.8 mill TEUs by 2045. Therefore there is clearly no need to build RBT2 at the huge cost of $3.5 billion plus whilst devastating the natural habitat and the Roberts Bank ecosystem in the process.

The federal government and cabinet must now recognize the only responsible action is to reject the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project, thereby preserving this ecosystem and wildlife habitat essential for the survival of 102 species at risk of extinction, plus over 2 billion juvenile salmon, and the 1.4 million migratory birds that visit this stop on the Pacific flyway every year. 

Read these two documents to understand why the Fraser Estuary is on the brink of collapse and why RBT2 is not needed - ever

The_Fraser_Estuary_is_on_the_Brink_of_Collapse_May_2021.pdf

Save_tax_dollars_and_Fraser_estuary.pdf

Fraser Estuary Under Threat

The Fraser Estuary is threatened with even more habitat destruction.

Fraser_Estuary_Threats.jpeg

A new presentation has just been released. It describes the Fraser Estuary and Roberts Bank, the habitat, ecology, environment and the threats and environmental degradation that it faces. View it here

APE_-_Fraser_Estuary_Threats_March_2021.pdf

New Nature Agreement - Must include rejecting RBT2

Canada and Britsh Columbia annouce new Nature Agreement.

https://www.newswire.ca/news-releases/canada-and-british-columbia-launch-development-of-a-new-nature-agreement-851016797.html

In announcing this agreement here is what Minister Wilkinson Environment and Climate Change said:

"We live in a province with unique species and ecosystems found nowhere else in the world. Protecting and promoting the recovery of threatened species is a responsibility and requires action based on collaboration. The British Columbia–Canada Nature Agreement will ensure we are working with our federal counterparts, Indigenous nations, and others to define new approaches that are supported by science and Indigenous knowledge. These first pilot projects will strengthen habitat protection for the threatened species which depend on it, such as the Spotted Owl, and help build a systemic approach to protection of biodiversity." 

So let's all hope he follows through and as part of building a "a systemic approach to protection of biodiversity" that he also rejects the Roberts Bank Terminal 2 project.

To help him achieve that send him an email to: ec.ministre-minister.ec@canada.ca and copy in BC Minister George Heyman at ENV.minister@gov.bc.ca