B.C., Alberta aim to increase ‘energy literacy’

Working group set up by Premiers Christy Clark and Alison Redford wants to increase education in schools, public

An oil tanker is surrounded by a containment boom as it loads crude oil at Westridge Terminal in Burnaby.

A B.C.-Alberta government working group on energy development has issued its first report, recommending efforts to “increase the public’s energy literacy on oil transportation, production and impacts on daily life.”

The group was set up by B.C. Premier Christy Clark and Alberta Premier Alison Redford last summer, after they agreed to co-operate on ways to increase oil and gas development and export. Headed by deputy ministers from both provinces, the working group released its first report this week.

The report notes a “disconnect between public perception and the reality” of the importance of oil and gas to the Canadian economy. The industry is the largest contributor to Canada’s balance of trade, and investment of $55 billion in new capital projects in 2012 alone.

It also records that Canada is losing an estimated $50 million a day in potential revenue due to lack of access to oil customers outside the United States, and acknowledges that without additional pipeline capacity, crude oil will increasingly be shipped by rail.

To respond to “misinformation on numerous fronts” on technology, economic benefits, environmental issues and regulatory practices, the report suggests increased effort in communities, First Nations and schools.

One program cited as an example is the Canadian Geographic Energy IQ Program, a partnership between the magazine and the Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers to “provide an interactive educational experience for students in the classroom on the prevalence of energy.”

Redford and Clark agreed last year to support B.C.’s five conditions for new heavy oil pipelines from Alberta to the Pacific coast, and Alberta’s proposal for a national energy strategy to improve access to markets for Canadian energy. B.C.’s conditions include “world class” spill prevention on land and at sea, which the report describes as an evolving target.

The report paints a rosy picture of oil spill response off the coast, despite a study done for the B.C. government last year that found little capacity to recover crude oil spilled off the North Coast.

The report also describes the need for better movement of goods from B.C. ports to Alberta’s industrial areas, an effort called “Project Cargo.”

It calls for improvements to highways, airports and ports at Kitimat, Prince Rupert and Vancouver.

 

Just Posted

Whisky society commits to charity donation in wake of whisky raids

Refund of Victoria Whiskey Festival tickets won’t impact charity beneficiaries

Victoria housing provider launches crisis prevention program to combat homelessness

Pacifica Housing aims to address challenges before tenants risk evictions

Victoria wins crucial WHL contest over Giants in Langley

Royals take over second in B.C. Division ahead of Vancouver

Cordova Bay group against plaza redevelopment

Cordova Bay shopping centre has three, four-storey buildings

Man hospitalized after early morning Sooke Road crash

Police say injuries are non life-threatening

WATCH: Giant waves smash Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point

Folks made their way to Ucluelet’s Amphitrite Point Lighthouse on Thursday, Jan.… Continue reading

WHL winning streak ends at four in Kelowna for Victoria

Royals lose 8-4 as Rockets explode offensively

Wind warning back in effect around Vancouver Island

80 km/h winds expected Saturday, Jan. 20, on east coast of Island, 100 km/h on west coast

VIDEO: Thousands join women’s march events across B.C.

Today marks one year since the first Women’s March on Washington

UPDATE: BC Transit’s handyDart service strike delayed

LRB application by contractor means new strike notice must be issued by union

Two Canadians, two Americans abducted in Nigeria are freed

Kidnapping for ransom is common in Nigeria, especially on the Kaduna to Abuja highway

Are you ready for some wrestling? WWE’s ‘Raw’ marks 25 years

WWE flagship show is set to mark its 25th anniversary on Monday

B.C. woman who forged husband’s will gets house arrest

Princeton Judge says Odelle Simmons did not benefit from her crime

Women’s movement has come a long way since march on Washington: Activists

Vancouver one of several cities hosting event on anniversary of historic Women’s March on Washington

Most Read