Mr. Speaker, two days ago the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development (Mr. Crombie) announced that Panarctic will be allowed to ship crude oil through the Northwest Passage.
This is in total disregard of the 1983 Lancaster Sound Green Paper, the 1981 Land Use Planning Policy for the North, and the Beaufort Sea Environmental Assessment Panel report which recommended that tanker traffic through the Northwest Passage not be allowed until government research, the preparation stage, and experimental program were concluded.
The Panarctic project does not contribute toward oil selfsufficiency. It represents the first step by the Government in allowing tanker transportation in the North and will probably be perceived by them as a further step in obtaining access to the Sisco well site. If this were to happen, it would result in a giant leap in Arctic tanker shipments. This move is unprecedented and will open the door to other companies.
There is already an application before the Minister by a consortium to drill a wildcat well in Lancaster Sound. The Minister should place an immediate moratorium on drilling in Lancaster Sound as required by the Government of the Northwest Territories, and he should reconsider his decision to allow Panarctic tankers access to the northwest.
The Inuit expressed several concerns. Damage done by an oil spill could destroy breeding grounds and natural resources on which the people rely for survival; insufficient-
Subtopic: NORTHERN AFFAIRS
Sub-subtopic: NORTHWEST PASSAGE OIL SHIPMENTS