I live near a train yard and often hear trains at night. Many like me live in what is often referred to as the “blast zone.” This is the area close enough to the rails to be at risk of death from an exploding oil train.
The Tesoro-Savage oil terminal proposal mentioned in a recent columbian.com op-ed, “Vancouver Energy terminal will provide many benefits,” will result in five fully loaded, crude-oil trains that are a mile to a mile-and-a-half long each day. The oil companies are not removing highly explosive gases such as ethane, propane and butane before shipping the oil in rail cars, making these tankers nothing more than rolling bombs that pass through cities near homes, schools, hospitals and businesses. The additional congestion and slower response times for emergency services should be enough to cause concern.
Those supporting the terminal claim that jobs are needed in Vancouver, and there is no denying that truth. But let’s create living-wage jobs by transitioning now from oil and gas that pollute air and water to clean, renewable energy sources such as wind and solar.