If safety is really the number one concern, then the best option is to just build pipelines rather than tinker with regulations governing the oil by rail industry.
The Council managed to cobble together a very scary scenario. However, in doing so, they committed errors of omission and commission that render their report essentially meaningless.
On Feb. 24, President Barack Obama vetoed Senate Bill 1, a.k.a. “The Keystone XL Pipeline Approval Act.” Mr. Obama’s action was not only predictable, it was virtually inevitable given a) the political polarization in the United States; b) unrelenting environmental opposition to the pipeline; and c) a certain amount of congressional over-reach.
The Obama administration has been punting a decision on the Keystone XL pipeline for five years now, and theres no sign the presidents kicking leg is getting tired.
Activists in British Columbia have responded to the National Energy Board's approval of the Northern Gateway oil pipeline with threats of illegal activism reminiscent of the 1990s. Greenpeace spokesman Mike Hudema, for example, said his group will "do what it takes" to ensure the pipeline is never built (and he specifically mentioned civil disobedience).
Following the U.S. governments delay in approving the much-hyped Keystone XL pipeline, many pundits turned their attention to the possibility of a new pipeline from the oilsands to BCs west coast that would allow Canada to ship larger amounts of oil to world markets, which currently offer a premium price relative to the U.S. Midwest.
BC Premier Christy Clarks demand for payments in return for permission to ship oil across BC lands is ill advised. It does not matter whether this payment takes the form of a claim on Albertas royalties or is based on the amount of oil flowing through the pipe; it is equivalent to a tax on trade and which, like tariffs on imports from abroad, results in high administrative costs, raises consumer prices and lowers living standards of all Canadians. It is rightly prohibited by federal legislation.