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The environmental group the Dogwood Initiative has discovered a letter from the late New Democratic Party leader Tommy Douglas, opposing a Kitimat pipeline project in 1977. (pdf)
Dogwood’s initial post about the letter, which is on the institute’s website, quickly went viral on Twitter at least in British Columbia.
The Feb. 8, 1977, warns that a group called the Kitimat Pipeline Project, a consortium of U.S. owned or controlled companies planned to build a pipeline from Edmonton to Kitimat to then onship oil to ports in the United States.
The Douglas letter goes over arguments that are familiar to those following the current controversy over the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, the few jobs in British Columbia as opposed to jobs in the United States, why were there no refining jobs in Canada and the advantage of tax revenue all opposed to the prospect of a catastrophic oil spill on the west coast.
Douglas urges the people of BC to petition the federal government and to ask for public hearings. He concludes by saying:
Remember that in a democracy, governments are your servants not your masters. It is your land, your environment and your future that are at stake. Now is the time to speak out in clear and unmistakable terms and say “Keep tankers out of Kitimat.”