For Immediate Release – February 4, 2020
OEB wondering if pipelines are connected to climate change
OEB asking the City of Hamilton and others
Could a new fracked gas pipeline affect climate change?
Check out the video clips from our Frontlines Not Pipelines event, in solidarity with the Wet'suwet'en land defenders, that took place on January 20, 2020!
The Enbridge fracked gas pipeline across Hamilton is now officially under review by the Ontario Energy Board (OEB). Amazingly, in 2020, this ENERGY board shows almost no interest in the climate emergency. Reply to this email if you want to help oppose this pipeline.
You need to immediately urge the Board to fully consider the climatic implications of this pipeline. These should include upstream methane emissions from extracting the gas by fracking, and downstream carbon dioxide emissions from burning of this fossil fuel. You should email your comments to BoardSec@oeb.ca and reference the “2021 Dawn Parkway Expansion Project”. Please write as soon as possible.
You can also point to the ecological damage from clearing the permanent pipeline easement that is the equivalent of an 8-9 lane highway and is entirely within the Greenbelt and across such ecologically significant areas as the Beverly Swamp, Spencer Creek and Bronte Creek. Enbridge estimates this new pipeline will require $120 million in increased gas payments from consumers. It also acknowledges that blasting is required to install the pipe in the bedrock along its route.
You can also urge others to sign the Hamilton 350 petition at https://www.change.org/p/ontario-energy-board-stop-the-enbridge-fracked-gas-pipeline-in-hamilton-ontario.
The Board published a notice on January 8 in the Hamilton Spectator. It invites comments but incredibly it does NOT provide an email address. You can use BoardSec@oeb.ca. You can examine other documents related to this fracked gas pipeline at http://www.rds.oeb.ca/HPECMWebDrawer/Record?q=CaseNumber%3DEB-2019-0159&sortBy=recRegisteredOn-&pageSize=400
The Ontario Clean Air Alliance has issued a two-page fact sheet you can view at https://www.cleanairalliance.org/wp-content/uploads/2020/01/Enbridges-Hamilton-Pipeline-Dec-2019.pdf
Hamilton 350 supports this call to action from the Hamilton chapter of Extinction Rebellion:
A CALL TO ACTION!
Members of Extinction Rebellion Canada, we are all watching government officials and hereditary chiefs of the Wet'suwet'en clash over the Coastal GasLink pipeline with outrage and concern. It feels like this is a defining moment in the fight to make meaningful change to the way human beings live on and relate to our land. Oil is not more important than blood. Money is not more important than life. Business as usual is not more important than the future of our children. We need to make it known. We need to send the message that we stand with Wet’suwet’en hereditary leaders and demand the RCMP stand down.
Hamilton XR is proposing immediate action. This Thursday and Friday we are asking everyone, across this country to inundate our MPs with our message. Go to their offices, call their phones, email them. Tweet at them. Flood social media with our message. No access without consent. No more colonial violence. Canadians demand change.
Please, join us in our campaign. Spread the word in any and all ways you are able to. Find your MP information here: https://www.ourcommons.ca/members/en
Use the hashtags that have been trending:
We can make noise. We can make it from our phones and computers if not in person. It takes little time and effort, but together we can be loud.
The fight against the fracked gas pipeline that Enbridge wants to put through rural Hamilton -- see this post for more detail on the proposal, and go here for a petition against the pipeline that you can sign and share -- is going to be a long one, and we will be asking you to take action in a number of ways in the coming months. The first one is easy: Send an email!
We want you to send an email to Christine Long, the secretary of the Ontario Energy Board, at BoardSec@ontarioenergyboard.ca. At this point, the OEB is deciding whether to allow Enbridge to simply submit written documents or whether to make them defend their proposal in an oral hearing. We feel strongly that the proposal should undergo an oral hearing. Please write to them and let them know that you think so too (and BCC us at email@example.com).
There are many reasons to take this position, and we encourage you to put it in your own words, but here are a few points you might want to make:
* the proposal raises significant issues and should be given thorough review
* the process must be made as open and transparent as possible, with as much opportunity as possible for the public to witness and participate
* the project crosses very ecologically significant land and puts water, wetlands, and endangered species at risk
* the project proposes to expand our supply of natural gas in the face of the climate emergency, when the science is telling us that we have to drastically reduce our use of fossil fuels
* it would allow Enbridge to be questioned about whether reducing demand through greater energy efficiency might be more in the public interest than creating new fossil fuel infrastructure
For more detail on Enbridge's proposal and more information you can use in your email, go here.
On Wednesday morning starting at 9:30 am, Hamilton’s general issues committee will consider how the city will implement the climate emergency it declared nine months ago by reducing greenhouse gas emissions and preparing for the expected local impacts of global heating. A multi-departmental task force will present its recommended “Goals and Areas of Focus for Climate Change Mitigation and Adaptation”.
Hamilton 350 Committee urges everyone concerned about global heating to attend and observe this public meeting. It will be held in council chambers on the second floor of City Hall and is open for all to attend and observe.
The committee is also expected to hear from numerous citizen delegates who will each have five minutes to respond to the climate emergency plans. Delegates are expected from several locally active climate groups including Environment Hamilton, the Hamilton 350 Committee, Extinction Rebellion and the student-led Fridays for Future movement.
Delegates are normally allowed to address the committee for five minutes and may use power point, video or other digital aids. Those wishing to be delegates need to apply by noon on Tuesday December 3 by completing an on-line form found at https://www.hamilton.ca/council-committee/council-committee-meetings/request-speak-committee-council-form.
The multi-departmental recommendations are described in several on-line documents posted on the city’s website. They include:
The delegations from residents will be heard before the staff presentation and councillor discussion.
For more information: firstname.lastname@example.org
Is Enbridge making “guilt payments” to Hamilton to grease approval of its brand new 48” fracked gas pipeline across rural Hamilton?
Join the picket of their media conference this Wednesday at 9:30 am on Stone Church Road East at Nebo Road
The city has issued an invitation to a media conference on Wednesday November 6 where Enbridge will announce the “support” it will provide the Hamilton Fire Department. The event is scheduled for 10 am at Fire Station #5 at 1227 Stone Church Road East at Nebo Road.
Enbridge Inc is the largest pipeline company in North America and is currently proposing to build a brand new fracked gas pipeline across some of Hamilton’s most ecologically sensitive rural lands. The new pipeline shows the company denies the climate emergency and the globally-recognized requirement to cut use of fossil fuels as fast as possible. Enbridge falsely says the pipeline is for “increased demand” at the same time as Hamilton and Burlington have already detailed how natural gas consumption must fall drastically in the next three decades as both cities move to carbon net-zero by 2050.
The guilt payments to the fire department also come in the wake of three major Enbridge gas pipeline explosions in the last 13 months. As such they represent an admission by Enbridge Inc that their pipelines are dangerous and very likely to result in fires and other dangerous situations that require the services of fire departments. Barely three months ago, an Enbridge gas pipeline exploded in Kentucky killing one person and sending five others to hospital. Earlier in the year, an Enbridge gas pipeline generated another fireball in Ohio. And in October of last year the explosion of an Enbridge gas pipe near Prince George, British Columbia created a massive fire and evacuation.
Enbridge’s planned new fracked gas pipeline from Kirkwall to just east of Highway 6 is an intentional climatic and ecological disaster. The route is entirely inside the Greenbelt and crosses the Beverly Swamp, Spencer Creek, Bronte Creek and multiple municipally-designated ecologically sensitive lands and waters. It also would plough through several large properties that have been purchased with public monies and are held by the Hamilton Conservation Authority for the express purpose of ensuring their permanent protection from bulldozers and other development. Pipeline installation typically involves bulldozing a 30-metre wide zone – in this case for ten kilometres.
The central business plan of Enbridge and other fossil fuel corporations will cause more global heating and climatic catastrophes by extracting, transporting and selling as much fossil fuel as possible. They are building new pipelines and carrying on this business plan despite widespread knowledge of its consequences and warnings a year ago from the most reputable global scientific body of climate scientists that climate-disrupting emissions must drop at least by half within the next decade.
Any payments made by these companies to public fire departments are piddling compared to what they owe for the climatic and other damages these corporations have already imposed and are continuing to make worse. This is not an act of charity by Enbridge, but instead an attempt to avoid being charged the full cost for their damaging business activities. Hamilton and its fire department should make clear that it regards these Enbridge monies as merely a tiny down payment on what is really owed and which must and will be collected. And obviously the city should not be bribed and should vigorously oppose Enbridge’s new pipeline.
Care about your future? Show it! Join the September 20th and 27th student strike and show the world and our politicians that North American university students are aware and active on climate change. Please help put politicians and fossil fuel executives on notice that we are in a climate emergency and require real action now!
Check out these two videos from Swedish teen activist Greta Thunberg calling for us all to join her and the many other youth the world over in the streets. And join people in Hamilton:
September 20th: A Climate Change Conference from 1pm to 3pm and a Climate March starting at King & Dundurn at 4pm. (Please note that the march leaves at 4pm, and people are encouraged to gather before that!)
September 27th: Student and worker rally at Gore Park (beside King and James) from noon to 3pm
Please sign the MacGreenInvest petition asking McMaster University to divest its endowment fund from fossil fuel companies!
The petition reads: "Given the existential threat of climate change and the mandate of the university to train the generations that will be highly impacted, and given the imperative (ethical and environmental) that fossil fuel extraction must wind down rather than expand, we ask that the McMaster University Board of Governors pledge to divest endowment investments from fossil fuel companies and reinvest those funds in exclusively green-energy companies within 1 year."
You can sign it here: http://chng.it/jvjqR6N5
The Climate & I:
A Listening & Sharing Circle
Are your feelings about the climate emergency weighing on you?
You are welcome to join us for a facilitated, supportive and non-confrontational meeting.
These circles have proven to be helpful both to climate activists and others. All views are listened to with respect.
Where: 75 MacNab Street South, Hamilton, room 313 When: Wednesday June 26th, 7-9 pm Wednesday July 10th, 7-9 pm
RSVP: Please email email@example.com if you are coming to either date (or both).
Hamilton 350 is a grassroots group based in Hamilton, Ontario, Canada, and affiliated with the continent-wide 350.org network. Our mission is to grow an engaged, aware local movement for urgent action and advocacy on the climate emergency that all of us face.
To get connected with us, look for Hamilton 350 on Facebook or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org
The next meeting of the Hamilton 350 Committee is this coming Wednesday, May 15 at 7 pm and we have confirmed the Environment Hamilton offices at 22 Wilson as the location. A major agenda item will be the holding a public meeting in Hamilton on a Green New Deal for Canada in response to the call issued by dozens of organizations from across the country including 350.org. The public meeting is currently set for Friday May 24 at 7 pm in rooms 192-193 of Hamilton City Hall.
Climate Emergency next steps:
The city staff report on implementing the climate emergency declaration is expected in June, but there are further steps that you should urge councillors to take now. These include:
If you have input and advice to the city on specific actions you think Hamilton should take to slash local greenhouse gas emissions and/or drawdown carbon from the atmosphere, please share this with Hamilton 350 committee to coordinate and strengthen these actions.
Further support for climate emergency declarations includes a call for an Ontario declaration made by the official opposition party in the legislature. See details at https://www.nationalobserver.com/2019/05/09/news/ontario-ndp-wants-declare-climate-emergency-doug-ford-wont-let-them
Stay tuned for the latest 350 news.