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The standoff between BigOil and environmentalists continues on Burnaby Mountain. Pipeline company KinderMorgan wants to triple its petroleum carrying capacity to bring Alberta oil to the Pacific coast for shipping to the US and overseas. They have not received the go-ahead from the Canadian Energy Board, but they have done preliminary work to map a new route for the proposed pipelines.
Part of that route would take them under Burnaby Mountain, much of which is dedicated parkland. The survey crews have been blocked from cutting more trees in the park by protesters. Some would call them protectors depending on one’s point of view.
KinderMorgan obtained an injunction to remove the protesters who were blocking the route. This served to increase the number of people joining in the movement. Police were moved in to remove the people. Peaceful, non-violent arrests were made. To date over 100 people have allowed themselves to be arrested rather than move out of the way. Under the terms of the court order an exclusion zone was established.
Early on when the arrests were being made, some said that the court order was vague and lacked proper GPS coordinates. This morning the Civil Liberties Union Association has asserted that the RCMP may have acted beyond the law in arresting people who were outside the zone described in the court order. KinderMorgan is back in court seeking to expand its exclusion zone.
As this issue has heated up, mayors of both Vancouver and Burnaby have been vocal in their opposition to the pipeline expansion. David Sukuzi made an appearance to bolster spirits and now veterans of the Clayquot Sound anti-logging group joined the Burnaby Mountain occupation to add support. Clayquot Sound old growth forest was eventually saved from logging, but only after over 900 people were arrested. The oldest person arrested today was 87 Jean McLaren, one of the veterans.
KinderMorgan is a Houston based company. When interviewed in May of this year they issued this statement:
“Trans Mountain has not made any assessment if it is possible or practical to transport expanded volumes,” a spokesperson said in an emailed statement Tuesday. Financial Post May 27, 2014
While changes can happen rapidly in industry, the planning of high pressure pipelines with a total diameter capacity of over three metres (approx. 3.5yards) takes careful planning. In December 2013 the company commissioned a detailed environmental plan for the building of the pipelines. It is available on the Net and makes for interesting reading. Following is a snippet from the report:
The construction right-of-way will typically be 45 m wide, including an approximately 18 m wide permanent easement. The remainder of the construction right-of-way width will be used as temporary workspace. ….
Temporary Workspace: Additional temporary workspace will be necessary at select locations to accommodate construction activities (e.g., road, rail, buried utility line and water crossings; sharp sidebends; tie-ins; and locations
The province of British Columbia is being asked by foreign owned corporations to bear the risks and environmental degradation that these high pressure pipelines cause. The petroleum products are not destined for Canadians, they are destined for off shore use and to increase the profits of foreign owned corporations.
TransMountain Environmental Protection Plan
The official Chinese news agency, Xinhua News, had reference to the demonstrators in a short news release, but did not elaborate on why the HK residents had been protesting.
The movement acquired its moniker Umbrella Movement when peaceful protesters were drenched in tear gas and pepper spray. Those holding umbrellas passed them forward to deflect the irritants. The occupy movement lasted nearly two months, but with this latest effort by the constabulary and the arrest of many of the leaders, the movement seems deeply wounded.
Even with the reports of brutality and heavy handed action by the authorities, the shut-down of the democracy demonstrations is remarkably mild when compared to the student occupation of Tiananmen Square in Beijing. The massacre of the peaceful students and arrest of many shocked the world that thought it was used to the merciless actions of the Beijing powerbrokers. The Jasmine Revolution was crushed in June of 1989. References to the massacre are still censored out of social media and the bloody incident is referred to carefully as 6-4-89.
Radio Free Asia
South China Morning Post
South China Morning Post
Left untreated the mortality rate reaches to 100%.
Bubonic plague is indelibly stamped on the European memory as it killed nearly one third of the European population in the Middle Ages. It inspired the so called nursery rhyme Ring Around all Rosey which referred to the ringed buboes, the stink of the disease so that one would put flowers in their pockets, sneezing and then death.
Plague is endemic to Asia, Africa and parts of S. America. It has appeared sporadically in the US but it is rarely found there.
UN News Centre
World Health Organization
One Coast Salish First Nation woman, who identified herself as a guardian named Sut-Lut, says she's willing to defy the order and go to jail because she loves Canada, the land and her human family. CBC News
The tide of public opinion seems to be turning against the building of more pipelines for transporting petroleum for export. Today the Republican Senate of the USA failed to endorse the Keystone Pipeline which would carry diluted bitumen south from Alberta. Formerly, Pres. Obama made a strongly worded statement about the project, asking what real advantage the pipeline would bring when the product would be slated for export to the world market.
The Vancouver Sun
CBC Early Edition podcast
In the process of viral reproduction, one virus may encounter another and combine some genetic material into its own makeup. The result may be a virus that has new characteristics such as changing from infecting chickens to infecting people as well.
The CDC is no longer updating information on bird flu strain H5N1. World Health Organization has no recent updates. People are understandably anxious when hearing about an avian flu outbreak in spite of health authorities assuring them that the chance of cross infections is rare. The spectre of the great 1918 pandemic which killed between 50 and 100 million people still lurks. That great pandemic is believed to have been a bird flu changed to a more aggressive form.
Pigs are another animal that develops influenza. A few years ago the WHO declared a pandemic when swine flu(H1N1) spread out of Mexico to the rest of the world. Health care people were extremely worried at the time that the pig virus and a bird virus would combine to make a killer of people.
German World DW
The Poultry Site
The two day event saw mass, peaceful rallies for a cleaner environment and rallies agitating for a full investigation into the plane crash over the Ukraine which cost many Australians their lives. While the main thrust of the summit was economic growth and tightening of banking rules, much discussion of climate change and civil unrest was also discussed.
It wasn’t all hard work and no-nonsense. Venues like Club Vixen and the Pig and Whistle are reported to have done brisk business during the two-day conference.
Vladimir Putin leaves G20 after leaders line up to browbeat him over Ukraine
While billions worth of oil has been extracted, many have been asking, “Where is the money?” The head of the national oil company has been accused of failing to account for $20 billion in oil revenues. The hapless government seems unable to ensure that its military has bullets for its guns in spite of the oil money rolling in. The finance minister could not explain to the BBC why $100 million per month in kerosene subsidies is unaccounted for.
Stolen petroleum is a big business in the Niger Delta as well. Cottage industry refineries work at night producing gasoline, kerosene and diesel. Some crude oil is reported to be shipped directly onto barges which move it to offshore tankers.
For the people living in the delta, the situation is a catch 22. The fishing has been hard hit with the pollution and no jobs are available so what is left is stealing oil. Those that are tasked with stopping the thievery are accused of taking bribes to ignore the refineries. An estimated 170 million people live in extreme poverty in the country making corruption, thievery and bribery a way of life.
"We settle with the army people. If they see money in your hand they will take that," Edward said.
"If not they will take products from you. If we have 10 drums we will give them two," he said, adding, "It's very normal." BBC
Nigeria is the most populous country in Africa with the largest economy, yet it seems unable to cope with modern realities.
The north of the country has been terrorized by the Boko Haram fanatics. The government of Goodluck Johnathan seems unable or unwilling to stop their predations of citizens. The Boko Haram recently announced that the 200 school girls kidnapped this spring have been married off as “slave wives”. When the awful news of their kidnapping became known to the world, the government originally denied it, then turned its ire on the mothers of the girls for demanding action be taken. A few girls escaped early in their capture, but the majority have been sold as slaves. This last week a boys’ school was bombed, killing about 50 young men.
UN Economic Programme
US Central Intelligence Agency