Groups call on BC and Science World to end LNG promotion

by: Various Authors | Posted Friday, Dec 19, 2014

Science World complex in Vancouver, BC. (Photo: Liam Ross / FLICKR)

Science World complex in Vancouver, BC. (Photo: Liam Ross / FLICKR)

Dear Premier Clark, Minister Coleman and Mr. Tisdall,

We the undersigned organizations and concerned citizens are writing to demand that the BC government end the partnership it has established with Science World to promote the liquefied natural gas (LNG) industry through a province-wide series of community seminars. By taking part in these seminars, we believe Science World has become complicit in the provincial government’s efforts to mislead our fellow British Columbians, our children and the world at large about the consequences of developing the BC LNG industry.

The science is clear: human-driven climate change represents a serious challenge for British Columbians, and is caused primarily by the production and consumption of fossil fuels. The proposed LNG industry, and the fracking industry that fuels it, will have widespread impacts on our climate. The BC government has advocated for the construction of an expansive network of LNG export terminals and pipelines to our west coast.

The BC government has repeatedly asserted that the export of LNG from BC will help reduce global emissions of the greenhouse gases that cause climate change. This assertion is based loosely on the claim that it will reduce coal consumption in other nations. However, there is simply no evidence to support this assertion.

In conjunction with the major climate impacts we can expect, producing the gas for five of these LNG terminals using fracking would also require an estimated 582 billion litres of water from BC’s rivers, lakes and streams. Should just five LNG terminals be developed, they would require an estimated 39,000 new gas wells to be drilled by 2040 – 90 per cent of which would be fracked.

A recent study by Simon Fraser University scientists also showed that two LNG terminals proposed in the Skeena River estuary by Petronas and BG Group threaten critical habitat and could potentially collapse the Skeena Salmon run, the second largest wild salmon run in Canada, if allowed to proceed2

Science World’s mission is to engage and educate British Columbians – and our children – in science. But its participation in the BC government’s promotional seminars ignores repeated warnings from experts about the serious environmental and climate impact of this industry.

The scientific community has been a global champion on the need to address climate change, and its root causes. LNG is anything but clean or green, and promoting this industry comes at the expense of our climate and watersheds. It is alarming that Science World is prepared to engage youth based on the government’s rhetoric on LNG rather than the science on climate and watershed impacts, and tie its programming to future job opportunities in the LNG industry.

We ask you to respect the scientific conclusion that climate change is driven by the burning of fossil fuels, and to cease engaging in programs that mislead the public on the consequences of developing an entirely new fossil fuel industry. Please pull the plug on your efforts to promote a dirty and dangerous LNG industry to the youth of this province through your Regional LNG Energy Seminars, and show British Columbians that science cannot be bought and sold to the
highest bidder.

Signed:

Wilderness Committee
Council of Canadians
ForestEthics Advocacy
My Sea to Sky
Skeena Watershed Conservation Coalition
Sierra Club BC
Greenpeace
Damien Gillis, Publisher

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Various Authors

Voices of groups carrying insightful, thoughtful, provocative and progressive ideas and views on Canadian and world politics, policies, institutions, systems, peoples, values and actions.