Municipal Opposition to Energy East Mounts with Quebec Rejection
Today, led by Montréal Mayor Denis Coderre, the 82 municipalities that make up the Communauté Métropolitaine de Montréal (CMM), representing nearly 4 million Québecois, delivered a resounding “No!” to Energy East.
Following a comprehensive consultation process, Coderre reported that 92% of CMM members definitively rejected TransCanada’s proposed $16 billion tarsands megapipeline through Québec. Citing a range of public safety, economic, environmental and climate concerns, Coderre commented that this decision does not reflect the weighting of environment over economy but rather expresses the certainty of “no at every level.”
Coderre has indicated that he will carry the CMM’s powerful opposition to the federal level, where he will encourage the Trudeau government to support the will of the majority of Québeckers in rejecting Energy East.
When asked whether this rejection could potentially lead to a surge in oil by rail transportation through the Montréal area – a concern often raised by pipeline proponents – Coderre argued that the CMM’s concerns for public safety extend to all methods by which petrochemcials are transported through municipalities. He challenged the Federation of Canadian Municipalities to push for clear guidelines to improve public safety regulations around both rail and pipeline transportation of hazardous goods.
With such significant, definitive opposition to Energy East in Québec, it now remains to be seen whether municipalities in other provinces that face these same threats from Energy East, including Kenora and other northwestern Ontario cities and towns, are prepared to openly reject this project that deserves a “no at every level.”