I delivered the following statement this morning at a meeting of the Ministerial Panel on the proposal to expand the Trans Mountain Oil Pipeline:
My name is Simon Donner and I work as an Associate Professor of Climatology in the Department of Geography at the University of British Columbia. For the past 15 years, I have conducted research in the area of climate change science and policy.
I am here today to explain the effect of upstream greenhouse gas emissions due to the proposed Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion on Canada’s international climate commitments following the Paris Climate Agreement.
Let me be clear at the outset. I am here as neither an opponent nor a proponent of the proposed activity. I am personally agnostic about the pipeline expansion. My statement speaks only to whether the project is consistent with Canada’s climate policy.
There are two key points in this statement:
First, the draft upstream emissions analysis conducted by Environment and Climate Change Canada features critical methodological shortcomings. These lead to incorrect conclusions about upstream emissions.
Second, the proposed pipeline expansion “locks in” future greenhouse gas emissions at a level that is not compatible with Canada’s international climate commitments, unless aggressive actions are taken to reduce net emissions from other sectors of the economy.