Pipelines and roads required to expand the gas industry in BC would result in a significant disturbance to previously untouched areas of the province. British Columbia prides itself on its rugged terrain and untouched wilderness. Infrastructure across the northern region of the province would impact that wilderness experience, as well as fish habitat and already threatened wildlife populations.
The proposed LNG pipelines would cross several hundred streams, many of which are important salmon-bearing streams. While a pipeline crossing a stream alone might not impact fish, the cumulative impacts of forestry, transportation, and hydro-electricity could be detrimental.
Grizzly bears are one mammal that would be directly impacted by pipeline development. Although BC has one of the healthiest populations of grizzlies today, they are listed as ‘special concern’ under the Species at Risk Act. Some studies have shown that grizzly bears use roads and pipeline corridors to hunt and travel, which makes them more susceptible to accidental deaths.
Caribou are also threatened by increased development in BC. According to a report out of the Fraser Institute, caribou would be disturbed and threatened by pipeline development in the province. Several species of caribou frequent Northern BC and are integral to the survival and identity of First Nations communities.
Request for a Strategic Economic and Environmental Assessment: Backgrounder
Calvin Sandborn et al. | UVic Environmental Law Centre | 2013
This backgrounder accompanied a request made by the Northwest Institute to the provincial and federal governments for a Strategic Economic and Environmental Assessment of LNG development in BC. It outlines the serious economic and environmental risks to the current ad hoc development of LNG. The UVic Environmental Law Centre pose fundamental questions global market realities, impacts to wildlife, output of greenhouse gas emissions, water usage and what negative economic impacts local consumers and other sectors may experience.