Questions for Kinder Morgan from David Huntley

Hi Alan:

Here are some questions for Kinder-Morgan as requested

(1) Will you make available some photos of the construction of the original pipeline in Westridge?

(2) Several years ago there was excavation to expose the pipeline on Ridge Drive, presumably to do some maintenance on it. Will you make available some photos of this?

(3) Kinder-Morgan says they do not have a detailed proposal for the pipeline location. Is there any route through Westridge that will not involve expropriation?

(4) Will you be applying to the National Energy Board for the maximum amount of oil the pipeline can transport? Or will you be applying for a lesser amount, and then later ask for an increase (which would not go to an environmental review)?

(5) There are reports that the diluted bitumen (dilbit) is more corrosive on pipelines than regular oil. Is it more corrosive?
Is this correct? If so what are you planning to do about it?

(6) The diluent contains benzene, a carcinogen. When there is a spill we need to know the benzene concentration in the air, immediately, at several locations, and how it changes with time. It is clear that a proper procedure is required for
a) measuring benzene at several locations at the time of a spill and afterwards,
b) informing the residents immediately and adequately (ie the scientific information, not just platitudes)), and
c) requiring evacuation when there is a danger to health.
Do you now take these appropriate measures?
Will you be taking these appropriate measures? Details please.

(7) We need to know the relation between concentration and time of exposure to benzene and the probability of getting cancer in the future. Will you be providing this information, and consequently the probability that during a leak the benzene will cause cancer in those breathing it; no platitudes please we want a proper scientific response.

(8) Will you reveal the other chemicals in the diluent? Since some of us will be breathing them we should have a right to know what they are. Are any of them carcinogens or in other ways toxic? Details please as in the previous two questions.

(9) I live three blocks immediately above the 2007 Westridge spill. Some residents near the spill were evacuated. Those on my street were not even informed of what was happening. Some of them became ill. Some time after the spill, maybe an hour later, although I could smell something, probably mercaptans, I was driven out of my house by the noise of the helicopters. I walked down the hill, the only public way out, to within a block of the spill; nobody stopped me or told me what was happening. It seems I was walking into the danger. Do you have a plan to better inform the nearby residents? If so, what is it?

(10) I am told that the amount of oil recovered after an oil spill is typically 10 %. When you have an oil spill, what percentage of the oil do you collect typically?

(11) There is a practice in this country of corporations, when their projects are finished, leaving a mess for the people of Canada to pay to clean up. What are your plans for the pipelines when they are no longer useful and before the company no longer exists.

other questions:

Kennedy Stewart, our MP, told us on Thursday evening that he had asked the National Energy Board some questions and did not get answers to them. It could be most useful to have these questions in the public domain. We ought to know what it is that the NEB is not willing to tell us or does not know.

Last week, someone on BC Almanac (CBC radio1 at noon weekdays) told us that “every inch” of the present Kinder-Morgan pipeline has been replaced since it was originally built. (I think that someone was either representing Kinder-Morgan or a chamber of commerce.) Is the statement correct? I am skeptical.

David Huntley
Professor Emeritus,
Physics, SFU.

7341 Ridge Dr.,
Burnaby, B.C.
V5A 1B4

Tuesday, October 16, 2012
Groups audience:

NEB denies BROKE status at Trans Mountain Toll Application

Just received this from Ecojustice:

Hi All,

Yesterday afternoon, the National Energy Board released it’s decision regarding the List of Parties at the Trans Mountain Toll Application. The Board decided that only commercial parties and governments who had sought to intervene will be parties at the hearing in February in Calgary.

This is disappointing, but not shocking. The Board is carefully guarding it’s mandate likely because pipeline issues are so very controversial now. Interestingly, the Board not only denied intervenor status to landowners and landowner groups, they also denied this status to the MPs who sought to intervene, the Communication, Energy and Paperworkers Union, and to the Tsleil Waututh First Nation.

Here is an excerpt from the ruling:

“As for the other intervention requests, the Board is of the view that they have not sufficiently justified their interest in the issues to be tried in this case. The issues to be decided in this case relate only and exclusively to the commercial aspects of a potential future expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline system, that include the toll methodology, the terms and conditions for oil transportation service, the allocation of capacity on the system, the appropriateness of the Open Season and specific filing requirement exemptions related to financial regulation.

As well, in the Board’s view, these other persons and groups have not sufficiently demonstrated how the Board’s decision could impact their rights and interests.

For these reasons, the Board does not grant Intervenor status to Mr. Kennedy Stewart M.P., Mr. Peter Julian M.P., The Communication, Energy and Paperworkers Union, Ms. Lynn Perrin/Pipe Up Network, Mr. Mohammed Janief, Burnaby Residents Opposed to Kinder Morgan Expansion, Burnaby Residents Along the Pipeline Route, and the Tsleil-Waututh Nation.”

This entire decision can be viewed at:

Ecojustice has been representing the Burnaby Residents along the Pipeline Route. I expect that we will be filing a Letter of Comment by the November 8th deadline on behalf of this group, but I will be checking with them. My own sense is that this process is a reminder that Kinder Morgan will always put its corporate interest ahead of the public interest wherever it can.


Not liking what he hears

Dear Editor:

Re: Listening key to working together, In My Opinion, Burnaby NOW, Oct. 5

Kinder Morgan Canada President Ian Anderson is beseeching us to listen.

I am listening and this is what I hear: An average of one oil leak a year on Kinder Morgan’s existing pipeline.

A company that refused to give our MP a map of the existing pipeline in North Burnaby – what does Kinder Morgan have to hide?

A victory declared because five years after the Kinder Morgan spill on Inlet Drive, the local marine plant and animal life is experiencing continuous revitalization.

That spilled bitumen sinks – as experienced in Kalamazoo – it doesn’t float.

I’m not hearing anything that’s building trust or confidence in Kinder Morgan’s plans to build a new pipeline right through the heart of North Burnaby.

Peter Cech, Burnaby

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