BC's west coast especially Hecate Strait near Haida Gwaii has untapped oil reserves governments and oil companies would love to exploit. In the wake of the BP oil spill disaster since April 20, 2010 (Hitler's birthday and 4:20 for the superstitious folks) pause and reflection will be needed by politicians and residents in and around Haida Gwaii to consider if breaking the oil drilling moratorium and putting an oil rig in Hecate Strait is worth the risk to the delicate ecosystems and animals.
Ever since the liberals have been elected they have made conscious headway into breaking the moratorium and to start the drilling for oil off the BC west coast. According to the article in the Georgia Strait publication entitled “B.C. Liberals set stage for offshore oil and gas drilling” the current government has made their intentions quite clear: “In October 2001, then–energy minister Richard Neufeld appointed a three-member scientific review panel, chaired by former University of Victoria president David Strong. Its mandate was to offer advice in four areas related to offshore oil and gas exploration, including whether “any specific government actions” should be taken prior to removing the provincial moratorium.”
Haida Gwaii residents and politicians will need to weigh the pros and cons of having an oil rig near by with the ensuing oil tanker traffic as well. With out a question of a doubt there will be jobs created for many years and the royalties would help BC's budget catch up with short falls with health care, educational and infrastructure spending.
The cons are enormous. If there was a similar BP oil spill the killing of animals, damage to the ecosystem, the plentiful food source of our ocean would be tainted for generations and a growing eco- adventure travel and tourism industry would be wiped out.. The financial cost would surely be the burden of the oil company, but if their money runs out it will be the BC taxpayer who will be left to pick up the pieces.
The BP oil spill has given the world pause and reflection on what the true price of our oil dependant lifestyle can cause. Any further drilling will need to be thoroughly studied and decisions will have to made as to weather the reward is greater than the risk. Keep Haida Gwaii beautiful! http://www.queen-
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