June 9, 1972

NDP

Stanley Howard Knowles (N.D.P. House Leader; Whip of the N.D.P.)

New Democratic Party

Mr. Knowles (Winnipeg North Centre):

Yes, Mr. Speaker, that is our understanding, that at five o'clock today the question on the motion as amended will be put and we hope it will be carried unanimously.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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NDP

Winona Grace MacInnis

New Democratic Party

Mrs. Grace Maclnnis (Vancouver-Kingsway):

Mr. Speaker, we have just watched a very interesting performance indeed. The Minister of State for Urban Affairs (Mr. Basford) has given a performance as smooth as silk. In this case it needed to be very smooth indeed. He has papered over the cracks in the record of the government, practically turning himself into an oil slick licker in order to show his anxiety and to cover up the long months of neglect when this government turned a deaf ear to pleas from this side of the House for something to be done in order to avoid a disaster such as has taken place at Cherry Point.

Earlier speakers have documented what happened in these long months. I refer specifically to those occasions

Oil Pollution

since January, 1971, when the hon. member for Fraser Valley West (Mr. Rose), the hon. member for Kootenay West (Mr. Harding), the hon. member for Surrey-White Rock (Mr. Mather), the hon. member for Nanaimo-Cowi-chan-The Islands (Mr. Douglas), the hon. member for Comox-Alberni (Mr. Barnett) and one or two members of the official opposition begged that something be done about this matter. It was not done, Mr. Speaker.

Anyone who has visited the west coast recently knows that even this government has to make a show of interest and anxiety at this time because feelings there are running very high-feelings of indignation, of outrage, of fear for the future. The people of British Columbia are deeply concerned about what is happening to the province, and not only in the matter of this oil slick, although that is a taste of what is to come. The hon. member for Prince Albert (Mr. Diefenbaker) referred to Canada as being a "have" country. We realize that the time is not far distant, if we keep a government of this kind, when we shall be joining the "have nots".

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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?

An hon. Member:

Have nuts.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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NDP

Winona Grace MacInnis

New Democratic Party

Mrs. Maclnnis:

We have the nuts right now, but we will be "have nots" before too long if we let this go on. It is not only oil, it is not only environment, it is not only fish, it is not only minerals, it is not only forest-in every one of these cases the federal government is demonstrating less than tokenism in trying to save and protect our resources which were among the richest in the world.

I am convinced, as this House is gradually becoming convinced because British Columbia members are doing their best, that this problem is not going to blow over. The people of British Columbia are becoming thoroughly aroused about this oil spill problem because they have seen what happens here. The age of gumshoe diplomacy is not dead in this government.

This morning the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. Sharp) said that we have been trying to persuade the United States government to do this and that. Those of us who have read history remember when Canadian governments adopted much more vigorous methods of persuasion in order to get the United States government to realize that there was a border and that we wanted to run our own show. This has not been the case with the present government.

It would be nice to believe that in this House we are all equally concerned about the disaster that has taken place at Cherry Point and that we are equally concerned to see that it does not happen again. Much as I would like to believe that, I cannot. It may be true of individual members, and most who come from British Columbia sense the feelings of the people there. But it just is not true of this government which is torn in its loyalties and has already made up its mind on which side it stands.

I listened carefully to the remarks of the Secretary of State for External Affairs this morning. He accepts the inevitability of the destruction of the environment because he accepts the inevitability of tankers coming down the west coast. His whole speech was predicated on the fact that tankers will come down the west coast. I am not sure that they need be allowed to do so. I would much prefer the attitude of the leader of our party, who said

June 9, 1972

Oil Pollution

that it was time the government of this country and an aroused people behind it took the position that Canada will not stand for tankers coming through Pacific waters. It may be said that we are just battling against shadows and that the United States will not pay any attention. But if some of us and the government would start doing this sort of thing, we might be joined by other governments. Some have shown that they have a little backbone even against the great United States.

I noticed in yesterday's newspapers a report that the Swedish prime minister, at the environmental meeting in Stockholm, without naming the United States had made abundantly clear where he stood on the outrage and the immense destruction brought about by indiscriminate bombing and the large-scale use of bulldozers and herbicides. He said it was of paramount importance that ecological warfare cease immediately. The United States recognized that the cap fitted and were enraged diplomatically because the prime minister of a little country like Sweden had dared make remarks which could refer only to them.

If Sweden could be joined by Canada and one or two other countries who pride themselves on being international powers, if our minister who is in Sweden now told some of the things that should be told about oil slicks and urged that the environment is more important than the provision of additional facilities for corporations to bring oil down the west coast, then we might get somewhere internationally. We will not get anywhere while we merely strike attitudes, take up positions and go with polite little notes to the United States.

I have consulted the record about what is going on, at least as far as one can in view of the cloak of secrecy surrounding these matters. On February 9, 1971, the hon. member for Fraser Valley West tried to get some information from the Secretary of State for External Affairs and received the following reply as recorded at page 3232 of Hansard:

I do not think it would be appropriate for us as a federal government to appear before any U.S. tribunal that is considering these questions, any more than we would consider it appropriate for the American government to appear before our tribunals. Our contacts must be much more direct. I am sure the hon. member recognizes the question of the dignity of our government in dealing with the governments of other countries.

There are times when something is more important than dignity and this is one of those times. The survival of this country is at stake. The minister can smile as much as he likes, but he knows perfectly well how British Columbians feel about this. If he had more intestinal fortitude he would tell the Secretary of State for External Affairs that sending polite notes is not enough, and merely referring these matters to the IJC is not sufficient. I think a proper way of handling this business would be by bringing forward the sort of motion that is suggested in the publication Perspective, which is put out by an anti-pollution organization on the coast. In their May issue they say:

We feel that prevention will be the best medicine for the problem. The half million dollars spent on the Vanlene oil clean-up-

That was the spill previous to this one.

-could have been used to begin installation of radar along the

west coast for the ministry of transport to monitor the approach of ocean-going vessels, and inform the captains of their positions as they near the coast-line. The captain of the Vanlene thought he was grounded on the coast of Washington. Canada must take immediate action to keep the rust-buckets like the Vanlene from entering Canadian waters without proper functioning guidance equipment. It is not worth the cost to the taxpapers for British Columbia harbours to seek increased trade with ships that could just as well end up on the rocks as in the harbour.

Then they say:

It would be an ironical situation for the federal government to proclaim a national underwater park in the Gulf of Georgia and not protect it from the potential polluters floating above.

If supertankers are permitted to travel along the coast of British Columbia it is only a matter of time before one of them runs aground.

The resultant spill will be 50 times worse than the 330 tons spilled by the Vanlene. The ecological and economical destruction would be disastrous.

Then they suggest a motion for setting up a committee formed of citizens from the Canadian side of the border as well as from the American side which would delve into the Cherry Point disaster and other matters, find the facts, make recommendations and then as a joint citizen group from both sides of the border bring pressure to bear on both governments jointly and make them act.

I know that on the government side of the House there is a great lack of respect for ordinary, organized citizens. Nevertheless, if we are to deal effectively with the United States I think we must encourage such voluntary citizen groups to do their work. Citizens must be informed, they must be organized and they must stand behind their government. What is the sense of sending polite notes to the United States government, to members of Congress, to the President or to anybody else unless the American government knows that Canadians are ready and willing to support their government in these efforts? The Skagit business is staring us in the face. The IJC is supposed to have made a report. And what has been the result? The government has done absolutely nothing. I suggest nothing will be done on either side of the border until enough citizens groups become concerned, stand behind those who are concerned about pollution and demand that something be done.

Only a few minutes remain to me, Mr. Speaker. May I say this. We need new priorities in this country, priorities different from those this government espouses. The government's top priority is that of economic profitability for corporations-oil corporations in this instance. The government adheres to that priority even though it results in ecological disaster for the west coast.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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NDP

Frank Howard

New Democratic Party

Mr. Howard (Skeena):

What do they care?

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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NDP

Winona Grace MacInnis

New Democratic Party

Mrs. Maclnnis:

We must change that. We must speak out and stand firm in our dealings with this government and the government across the border. We have had one Arrow disaster. We know what that disaster meant for the people of the area concerned. How many more disasters like Chedabucto Bay and Cherry Point must there be before the government realizes that setting up equipment to deal with pollution when it occurs is not enough? We must prevent these disasters and as our first line of defence we must stop the big supertankers from coming in large numbers down the west coast. It can be done if

June 9, 1972

the government wants to do it. Apparently this government has given its allegiance to big business on both sides of the border, to oil companies and other big companies. Its polite notes are designed to give people the idea it is doing something.

Let the government think what all this means to British Columbia. Let it think of the beaches fouled, of water polluted, of recreational possibilities damaged, and so on. Our second largest industry, the tourist industry, is shot because the environment which makes that industry possible is being wrecked. Wildlife is destroyed. Such pollution is a disaster for marine life and for bird life. These things are irreplaceable. Our province, one of the most beautiful areas in the whole world, is being desecrated by oil companies, mining companies and lumber companies which are taking out all that the traffic will bear without any thought of what will happen. It is time British Columbia members made their voices heard loudly and clearly. It is not enough, in view of what is going on, to introduce a motion of this kind. I can hardly believe that British Columbia supporters of the government will allow the government to get away with this sort of thing.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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?

An hon. Member:

You had better believe it.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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NDP

Winona Grace MacInnis

New Democratic Party

Mrs. Maclnnis:

Mr. Speaker, of course we are in favour of this motion even though its introduction involved political trickery. We believe in what the motion says and we support the amendment. We will support the motion as amended. However, let me say this: the people of British Columbia are not fooling and they do not intend to let this government get away with what has been happening in the past 18 months. They will not tolerate such complete neglect and failure to do anything concrete that will stop tankers coming down the west coast. I for one hope that every force in this country will be mobilized to prevent this outrage being perpetrated against our west coast province.

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Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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LIB

Grant Deachman

Liberal

Mr. Grant Deachman (Vancouver Quadra):

Mr. Speaker, the motion of the hon. member for Fraser Valley East (Mr. Pringle) has provided the House with an excellent opportunity to review a subject very close to the hearts of west coast members and all members who serve constituencies adjacent to or involved with bodies of water that are navigated by commercial vessels.

In order to focus our attention more sharply after the numerous speakers who have spoken in a number of hours of debate, let me deal with the spill and say how large it was. Strangely enough, this was not a big spill and not a very damaging spill. It was dramatic, not so much because of its size but because of the location in which it occurred and what is anticipated will take place on the west coast. I have some notes which the hon. member for Fraser Valley East was good enough to give me after he had been in touch with the office today of Congressman Meeds of the state of Washington. According to these notes, the clean-up co-ordinator is Captain David Gersho-witz, captain of the port of Seattle coast guard district. The tanker involved was the World Bond, a ship under Liberian registry carrying oil from Iran. This was not oil that is to be connected with the new, proposed oil route from Alaska.

Oil Pollution

The ship arrived at Cherry Point late on June 3, 1972, and began discharging oil almost immediately. The spill occurred during darkness on June 4. Witnesses say that crude oil discharged for approximately five hours before it was discovered. A great deal of the spill was contained by plastic booms surrounding the discharging vessel. There is a regulation which states that loading or discharging vessels must be surrounded by these booms. However, they are not effective in currents greater than seven-tenths of one knot; oil is sucked under the boom when the current exceeds that figure. Coastguards estimate the spill at approximately 100 barrels, each running to 55 gallons. Some estimates are as high as 300 barrels. So, Mr. Speaker, we are talking about an oil spill of between 5,000 and 6,000 gallons.

A broken valve caused the spill. The valve has been taken from the ship and sent by the coastguard to an independent testing lab to determine the cause of the break, whether it was the responsibility of the vessel or of the Atlantic Richfield Oil Company.

On Monday, Congressman Meeds will testify before a sub-committee on the navigable waters safety act sponsored by Senator Magnusson and himself. This legislation was introduced after the spill at Anacortes last year. It will provide for strict harbour controls which will lessen the possibility of collision and strict construction standards for bulk liquid carriers, such as oil carriers. Initially, only United States tankers will have to comply with this ruling, but by 1974 foreign tankers will also be included. The notes conclude:

A letter was mailed today from Senators Magnusson and Jackson and Congressman Meeds to Secretary of State Rogers requesting the administration to call a cabinet-level, Canadian-U.S. oil spill conference. This conference would specifically discuss the international consequences and possibly co-ordinate action in the event of future oil spills.

Here is a movement toward Canada-U.S. co-operation which up to this point has not been recorded in this debate. It is certainly going to be a useful addition to the studies now being taken to see if some control can be brought to the matter of oil spills on an international basis between Canada and the United States. This is in addition to the recommendation made by the government of Canada for action by the International Joint Commission.

It is interesting to note that today, June 9, hearings are taking place in the Congress of the United States, in Washington, in the joint economic committee of which Senator William Proxmire is chairman. I quote from a press release dated June 2:

Senator William Proxmire ... announced Friday that the Committee will hold four days of hearings on June 7, 8, 9 and 22 on natural gas regulation and the trans-Alaska pipeline.

"It is becoming increasingly clear that the supply of energy has shifted from abundance to scarcity," Proxmire said, "and that the nation badly needs wise public policies to avert an energy crisis-

"It also means that government policies must be formulated in a broad perspective that carefully balances the environmental, economic, national security, and other social demands of both consumers and producers-

"The purpose of the hearings I am announcing today will be to place the Federal Power Commission's regulation of natural gas and the Interior Department's decision to approve the trans-Alas-

June 9, 1972

Oil Pollution

ka pipeline right-of-way into this broad context and determine how well these policies serve the broad public interest-

"The hearings on June 9 and 22 will investigate whether there is evidence to support the Interior Department's decision to approve the trans-Alaska pipeline right-of-way. As I indicated in a May 19 letter to Secretary Morton, a preliminary analysis of the available information indicates serious omissions and inconsistencies between Secretary Morton's public statements and his department's analysis of the situation."

Of particular interest to us is that in the schedule of witnesses, attached to this press release, who will appear before the committee today the first witness is "David Anderson, Member of Parliament, Canada". A little later I want to remark on why the hon. member for Esquimalt-Saanich (Mr. Anderson) happens to be before that committee today, about the work he is doing and also the very valuable work being done by the hon. member for Victoria (Mr. Groos) in this field. Before I do so I want to refer to the area that is affected.

The Gulf of Georgia and Puget Sound would be affected by the oil spills we have been discussing today. Puget Sound and the Gulf of Georgia are formed by an indentation of the west coast and by the inland shore of Vancouver Island. These two bodies of water together are about 20 to 30 miles across. They extend northward from the southern point in the state of Washington for a distance of approximately 200 miles. This inland sea is an extremely busy area. It is plied daily by hundreds of vessels, commercial, recreational, small craft and one of the biggest fishing fleets in the world. The area is of inestimable value for trade, recreation and marine life. It is also a great commercial fishery. Around its shores and in the Strait of Juan de Fuca, which is the strait leading into the Gulf of Georgia and Puget Sound, are the cities of Victoria, Tacoma, Seattle, Vancouver and smaller centres such as Nanaimo, and so on.

Let me now deal with the threat to this area from oil spills. While it is true that oil has moved daily in vessels up and down the Gulf of Georgia and Puget Sound for decades and spills have occurred again and again, it is only with the possibility of giant oil tankers proposed for the Alaska route, or TAPS route as it is called, that a threat of this magnitude comes to the Gulf of Georgia. This threat is beyond our present capability to manage or even comprehend. To give hon. members some idea of what is meant by an oil spill if vessels of the 250,000 tons and up class were to spill oil in the Strait of Georgia, let me refer to words which the hon. member for Victoria used in a speech last February to the Vancouver Island Liberal Association.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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PC

Thomas Miller Bell (Chief Opposition Whip; Whip of the Progressive Conservative Party)

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Bell:

Was this before you kicked him out of caucus, or after?

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LIB

Grant Deachman

Liberal

Mr. Deachman:

I am referring to the hon. member for Victoria, whom we have not kicked out of caucus. We never kick anybody out of the Liberal caucus.

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PC

Lloyd Roseville Crouse

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Crouse:

What about Hellyer and Kierans?

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LIB

Grant Deachman

Liberal

Mr. Deachman:

Sometimes members decide that they want to leave us, but we never kick anyone out. The hon. member for Victoria said:

The tankers they are building for the Valdez-Bellingham route carry about a million barrels of crude. At roughly 250,000 tons

[Mr. Deachman.J

they are today considered to be only medium-large tankers. It would take about three of that size every day to take the maximum output of the TAPS line at Valdez. But I did a little calculation with the help of some handy conversion tables, and if the million barrels they carry is as incomprehensible to you as it is to me perhaps it is easier to understand if I say that a million barrels would make a trail of crude oil 18 feet wide and an inch thick for a distance of 700 miles. If you want the 700-mile trail a little wider- say 30 feet wide-still an inch thick-just move up to a 500,000-ton tanker.

The same hon. member, in an address to the Chamber of Commerce of Vancouver Island at Duncan, British Columbia, in March, 1971 said:

The Torrey Canyon was a 100,000-ton or 600,000-barrel capacity oil tanker. It got off course and spilled the whole works in the English Channel. The tanker Haro which ran aground off a reef in Chedabucto Bay spilled about 10,000 tons, 5,000 tons of which escaped the sea and was never a part of the immediate problem. It cost $3.5 million to clean up even superficially the other 5,000 tons. What is by today's standards now known as a medium-sized oil tanker of about 100,000 tons would carry about the same amount- about 5,000 tons of oil for its own consumption and a 200,000-ton-ner of the Universe class will carry over 12,000 tons. This is not the end. Tankers nowadays range up to double that size, to 400,000 tons, and there are bigger ones on the drawing board.

Consider the threat brought to the west coast by the proposed TAPS line. Consider for a moment what is at stake here as far as the Americans are concerned and what the possibilities are of preventing traffic along this route, as was suggested by the hon. member for Vancouv-er-Kingsway (Mrs. Maclnnis), or seeing it diverted down the Mackenzie Valley through Canada. I wish to quote from a well respected industrial newsletter published on the west coast, Beale's Resource Industry newsletter. Reference is made to a report published in the United States by the president of the Alyeska Pipeline Service Company the purpose of which is to set out the United States case in support of the west coast tanker route. The president stated:

The dependency on foreign crude sources in district V is greater than comparable dependency in the aggregate of district I-IV.

In other words, the interior of America is already well supplied by internal oil resources. It is the coastal area which has economic problems. The article goes on to point out as follows:

Shipment of North Slope crude oil to district II could lead to a current underutilization of existing systems and a future oversupply in that district at the expense of district V-

The uncertainties associated with any trans-Canada pipeline indicate it could not be built without much delay and greater cost than suggested in the environmental impact statement.

He points to the seriousness of the Canadian native claims issue which he feels would upset going ahead with the Mackenzie route. The report continues:

A trans-Canada pipeline would raise significant environmental issues where there is currently no established forum for dealing with them and could involve regulatory and jurisdictional delays beyond any reliable estimate-

Canadian equity financing would be necessarily limited and requirements for transportation of Canadian oil could result in excessive net resource costs to the United States.

The report goes on to document various reasons why they do not want to accept the Mackenzie Valley route and why they consider the less costly, more flexible, totally

June 9, 1972

U.S.-operated and controlled west coast route to be more desirable. And so it seems evident as we watch-

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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LIB

Russell Clayton Honey (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Deputy Speaker:

Order, please. I interrupt the hon. member to remind him of the agreement reached as to the time to be allotted to speeches. The hon. member's time has expired.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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LIB

Grant Deachman

Liberal

Mr. Deachman:

Perhaps hon. members would be good enough to give me a few more moments. I shall be finished in a very few moments.

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LIB

Russell Clayton Honey (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Deputy Speaker:

I will put it to hon. members. At the same time, I will incorporate with that request the suggestion that the hon. member for Cumberland-Col-chester North might be allowed the 15 minutes to which he is entitled. Is that agreeable to hon. members?

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Subtopic:   POLLUTION
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?

Some hon. Members:

Agreed.

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LIB

Grant Deachman

Liberal

Mr. Deachman:

Thank you, Mr. Speaker. In summary, I would like to particularly praise the work of the hon. member for Esquimalt-Saanich in his fight before the U.S. courts and in congressional committees in an effort to point out what this issue means environmentally to the Puget Sound and Georgia Bay areas. I would remind hon. members how effective the hon. member has been in making the people of Canada, the people of the United States, the Congress of the United States and this Parliament aware of these problems.

I would also praise my colleague, the hon. member for Victoria, for what he has done. He has made some extremely valuable suggestions as to what could be done on the west coast to ensure more effective control of tanker traffic. We must recognize that tanker traffic is coming, and I very much doubt that it is within the power of this Parliament or the people of Canada to prevent these vessels operating on the high seas off the west coast and in and out of U.S. ports.

While I do not have time today to discuss the details of the measures advocated by the hon. member for Victoria, may I simply refer to his suggestion that an elaborate system of radar control operate on the west coast to keep this traffic under surveillance throughout its passage. This program would provide rigid inspection and would prevent rust-buckets, as one hon. member called them a moment ago, entering the sheltered waters of the west coast. The hon. member also suggested provision of harbours of refuge for vessels in danger, places where safety gear might be kept ready for use whenever oil spills occur.

It will be seen, therefore, that work is being done to bring about better rapport between Canada and the United States in an effort to control these matters, and that suggestions are being made by Members of Parliament both to our own government and to the United States as to what can be done to control this growing threat.

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PC

Robert Carman Coates

Progressive Conservative

Mr. Robert C. Coates (Cumberland-Colchester North):

Mr. Speaker, at the outset I wish to say that in my opinion this has been a very useful debate today after what might be termed a lost weekend yesterday. I think the government has materially assisted in allowing the amendment

Oil Pollution

proposed by the hon. member for Yukon (Mr. Nielsen). It was accepted today by the Secretary of State for External Affairs (Mr. Sharp) on behalf of the government.

The International Joint Committee now will not only have authority to consider the matter by way of reference but will also have the necessary resources, financial and otherwise, to produce results that will provide protection to the people of the United States and Canada against hazards, real and realized, from the tanker transportation of oil.

The gravity of the situation can best be appreciated when the facts are examined. We learned that within three to five seconds between 4,000 and 12,000 gallons of oil were spilled into the ocean. We in Nova Scotia know the frightening dangers to the ecology from oil spills. The Arrow disaster in Chedabucto Bay resulted in 1.2 million gallons of crude oil plastering 190 miles of our province's shoreline, killing wildlife and costing the taxpayers of this nation a fortune.

The oil spill in British Columbia is a drop in the bucket compared to the Arrow disaster and the danger of future disasters to British Columbia from tankers which will have a 100,000-ton dead weight capacity as compared with the 18,000-ton dead weight capacity of the Arrow. The hon. member for Vancouver Quadra (Mr. Deachman) was talking about tankers with a 250,000-ton dead weight capacity and the possibility of still larger tankers being built.

I have a 1972 year book issued for the "National Fisherman" in which is a picture of one of the great supertankers being produced. Part of the accompanying story reads as follows:

Controversy over proposed superports-deep water terminals to receive oiMankers which may range up to one million tons dead weight in another decade-

That indicates what the people of British Columbia have to face in the future so far as tanker traffic is concerned along their shorelines. We in Nova Scotia appreciate how frightening this whole situation is for members who come from that area of Canada and the people who live there, just as we are frightened in Nova Scotia about similar future problems associated with our coastline.

What concerns me about this debate, just as with the situation at the time of the Arrow disaster, is that we approach each of these disasters as they occur, and when they occur, to our ecology on a piecemeal basis. The time has arrived for an integrated, national long-term policy which will ensure control and regulation of all such activities be they problems of pollution associated with the Great Lakes, tanker traffic on the east and west coasts or the development of nuclear power plants whether the sites be on either of our coasts or in central Canada.

While the residents of British Columbia have this week been concerned about the oil spill from the Cherry Point refinery, we in Nova Scotia have been concerned about the possible construction of a nuclear power plant on Stoddart Island in Shag Harbour. We were told discussions were being held between officials of a United States group and Mr. Regan's government about the possible

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June 9, 1972

Oil Pollution

construction of a $2 billion, 12,000 megawatt nuclear generating station with power to be exported from that plant by cable under the Atlantic Ocean to the northeastern United States.

Surely the dangers inherent in such a project are just as real and even more deadly to our environment, as well as to those who live in the area of Nova Scotia, as the oil spills on both the east and west coasts. Surely we should before now have had definite statements as to just who can build these plants, as well as in respect of the dangers to the public of such a power station and the relative dangers associated with the CANDU-type nuclear power station as compared with the United States light water reactor which has been proposed for construction by United States interests on Stoddart Island.

It was helpful to learn from the Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources (Mr. Macdonald) today that the type of reactor proposed for Nova Scotia had not been authorized in Canada and will either require a change in the criteria or a refusal of the application. We must certainly have some guarantee from the government as to the safety of these nuclear power stations from almost every point of view. I am informed that the Pickering I nuclear power station had to be cut back from full energy production to 80 per cent capacity as a result of a build-up of cobalt 40, the same substance used in the cobalt bomb. Pollution Probe has contended this is the highest concentration found in a non-military device. It is also contended by Pollution Probe that there is a higher level of radioactivity in the Pickering area than is normal. We must act in an attempt to solve this type of pollution problem as well as pollution from oil spills. We must have greater assurance than we have at present that pollution associated with the CANDU method of nuclear power generation is less dangerous to the public and the environment than other methods of power production.

It has been my view that the CANDU method of nuclear power generation produces a great deal of radioactive waste. It is urgent, also, that we obtain new assurances with regard to effluents, for again I understand the Pickering I nuclear power station also had to be cut back because its production capacity was heating up the lake into which it dumps its effluent to such a degree that it was dangerous to the resources of the area. Again I should like to refer to the "National Fisherman" and its reference to the dumping of effluents into waters by nuclear power plants. It reads:

Dumped indiscriminately, waste heat can raise water temperatures near discharge tubes more than 20 degrees F, disrupting migratory and reproductive cycles and killing fish or driving them away.

That is an indication of the type of danger associated with nuclear power generation. We should be involved in an over-all examination of all types of pollution developed by man in various ways. This is particularly so if we are to build nuclear power stations in this country, just as it is if the United States is to build tankers with a dead weight of a million tons capacity to carry oil from Valdez to Cherry Point or some other refinery on the west coast, creating tremendous danger to the people of British Columbia from every environmental and ecological point of view.

[Mr. Coates.1

We should have the same assurance when the government approves the development of nuclear power stations whether it be by Atomic Energy of Canada Limited or someone else. We must have every guarantee that there will be no danger or that the danger will be very minimal to our environment, the ecology and the people who live in the area.

There is a suggestion that in the Chicago area of the United States, where a nuclear power generating station has been built, the incidence of stillborn children is greater the closer you get to the power station. This is information gathered during a study carried out in the United States by environmentalists. Surely we do not want to be party to the construction of that type of station which will kill children even before they are born. We already have evidence that there is more radioactivity in the environment the closer you get to the Pickering nuclear power station. Surely we should not place communities in a position where our people might suffer this kind of danger.

Coming from the Atlantic provinces, I find it strange that there should be talk of nuclear power stations by the government of Nova Scotia and the government of New Brunswick which have at their doorstep the tides of the Bay of Fundy which could produce a similar amount of power which would be completely pollution free. I believe, also, we must have an assurance from the government as to who should have the right to build nuclear power stations. I endeavoured to obtain today some information in this regard from the Minister of Energy, Mines and Resources.

Should a group of United States citizens, who are not allowed to build or who cannot receive a permit to build a nuclear power station in their own country, be permitted to come to this country as a private group of individuals and receive permission to build a nuclear power station here which would direct most of the energy produced back to the United States where it is required? Surely it is stupid for us to become involved in such a situation, especially when we consider the danger inherent in many aspects of the production of nuclear power.

I should like to thank you, Mr. Speaker, for your kindness in allowing me to speak for 15 minutes in this debate. I should also like to congratulate the hon. member for Fraser Valley East (Mr. Pringle) for putting this motion before the House. Some people may say it was done through trickery. I do not care why or how it was done. I believe this has been a very useful debate. It is the type of debate which the people of Canada wanted the House of Commons to have today. I think the New Democratic Party deserves credit for seeing that the disaster of yesterday became a useful mechanism for today so that Members of Parliament of all parties would have an opportunity to express their points of view on the tremendous problems associated with man-made pollution and how we can best correct the situation.

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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LIB

Russell Clayton Honey (Deputy Speaker and Chair of Committees of the Whole of the House of Commons)

Liberal

Mr. Deputy Speaker:

Is the House ready for the question?

Topic:   GOVERNMENT ORDERS
Subtopic:   POLLUTION
Sub-subtopic:   CHERRY POINT OIL SPILL-PROPOSED REFERENCE TO INTERNATIONAL JOINT COMMISSION
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June 9, 1972