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New Report : Oil Pipeline Safety Failures in Canada

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Équiterre has published a brand-new report entitled: “Oil Pipeline Safety Failures in Canada: incidents, accidents and spills and the ongoing failure to protect the public”. The analysis and findings of the report strongly challenge the picture of pipeline safety as often portrayed by governments and industry – particularly claims of “world class safety” regimes and “state-of-the-art” technology to ensure the safety of citizens and the environment.

Worrisome findings include:

  • Pipeline incidents are rising in Canada: National Energy Board (NEB) data show that in 2017 there were 173 pipeline incidents across the country – a significant increase from 122 incidents in 2016.
  • 55% of Québec’s pipeline incidents since 2008 occurred in 2017 alone. Quebec currently has a much higher proportion of pipeline incidents than in previous years compared to other provinces.
  • Widely-touted spill detection technology is detecting less than 50% of incidents.
  • The National Energy Board, which is responsible for ensuring pipeline safety, is not effectively protecting citizens nor the environment from pipeline incidents.

“The National Energy Board is failing to protect Canadians and the environment from pipeline incidents,” states Steven Guilbeault, Senior Director at Équiterre. “Not only is it failing to ensure the safety of existing pipelines, but it is also responsible for authorizing the development of new ones. With our federal government’s recent significant purchase of the Trans Mountain Pipeline, Canadians should be worried by this report’s findings that show that the agency responsible for enforcing pipeline safety is not capable handling the work that’s currently on its plate.”

The study combed through the NEB and TSB databases for all Canadian provinces with pipelines. It zooms in on four pipelines that run through Québec : Trans-Nord (Trans Northern Pipelines Inc.) and Valero’s Pipeline Saint-Laurent , which transport refined petroleum products (ex: gasoline, diesel, jet fuel), as well as Enbridge’s Line 9 Pipeline and Montreal Pipeline Limited’s Portland-Montreal Pipeline.

For more information, see the news release.

What can you do?

SIGN OUR PETITION to demand that the Trudeau government reconsider financing Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Pipeline with your tax dollars.