When the news broke last week that the Chevron oil refinery in a Vancouver suburb was leaking oil into the Burrard Inlet and they have no idea why, I wondered, where was the uproar from the surrounding community?
Chevron Canada Ltd.‘s Burnaby refinery hugs a sleepy suburb in the Greater Vancouver Area. Ignoring the fact that an oil refinery parked next to a residential neighbourhood is a shining example of urban planning not well thought out, why is it no local environmental group has raised concern about the oil leak? Especially at a time when the world is horrified at the massive oil spill in the Gulf of Mexico?
The CBC reported workers at the plant discovered an oily substance seeping into Burrard Inlet on April 21. News of the leak was made public on May 28. The company is still trying to determine exactly what the source of the leak is and how much has seeped into the water over time.
What is the provincial Liberal government doing about this situation? As noted by aquatic biologist John Werring, of the David Suzuki Foundation, “I don’t see anyone here except for one individual sitting there in a chair” who monitors the site for Chevron and helps keeps onlookers at bay.
So the leak continues, with few answers, some concern perhaps, and seemingly no action by the provincial government.
Meanwhile, the people of Burnaby and Vancouver appear to be apathetic to this situation. They need to let Chevron Canada and the B.C. Liberal government know this is unacceptable.
To ignore a potential environmental disaster in one’s own backyard is folly.
‘Ignorance is not bliss’. We need to respond to this!