Delta South MLA Vicki Huntington will be taking the concerns of a citizens' group opposed to a jet fuel delivery plan to Victoria this week.
Members of Vancouver Airport Pipeline Opposition for Richmond (VAPOR) visited Huntington at her Ladner constituency office last Friday, presenting a 6,000-name petition, as well as a formal legal petition, to present to the legislature and lobby their case.
The coalition of residents, who also recently gave Finn Donnelly, MP for New WestminsterCoquitlam-Port Moody, the same package to bring to the House of Commons in Ottawa, is fighting a proposal to barge jet fuel up the Fraser River to serve Vancouver International Airport.
Owned by a consortium of airlines that use YVR, the Vancouver Airport Fuel Facilities Corporation proposed a plan to have jet fuel barged to a tank farm that would be built on the Richmond side of the south arm of the river. An underground pipeline would then send the fuel to the airport. The proponent selected the project after considering 14 fuel delivery options.
Made up mostly of Richmond residents, but a few from Delta, VAPOR says it's not opposed to the airport having a stable supply of fuel, however, environmental and public safety have to be taken into account.
Making a presentation to Delta council several months ago, the group, recently made another presentation to Richmond council, which has already stated its opposition to the transportation of jet fuel on the Fraser River.
VAPOR, which is pitching alternative pipeline deliveries, including increasing the flow of the Kinder Morgan pipeline, is unhappy about the provincial environmental review process and wants the federal government to step in, noting even an official with Environment Canada is conveying concerns.
Huntington said the government needs to understand there has to be a balance between economic and environmental values.
"When you consider the Lower Mainland as a whole, Delta is the balance. It's all that's left, and there's still pressure on all that remains on the environmental values of the estuary."
Huntington added the Department of Fisheries and Oceans should be stepping in and stopping the project.
The B.C. Environmental Assessment Office accepted a formal application for an environmental assessment of the proposed Vancouver Airport Fuel Delivery Project earlier this year, starting a public consultation period. The assessment was subsequently postponed when the fuel consortium offered to look at other options.