I feel I have not been adequately informed regarding the proposed transport of thermal coal from Wyoming, U.S. via Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railroad, through White Rock, Surrey, Delta and other areas of the Lower Mainland.
Westshore Terminals, located at Roberts Bank, has plans to expand a second terminal which would connect to its existing one. There is another coal transfer facility terminal planned which would be located on the Fraser River (Fraser Surrey Docks)
The expansion of the coal via trains will have negative effects on health and the environment.
Thermal coal (for electricity) is different from metallurgical coal (for steel making). Coal dust is a known carcinogen which contains toxic heavy metals such as mercury and arsenic which can lead to “black lung disease” and is associated with chronic bronchitis and emphysema.
The increasing import of thermal coal will have devastating effects on one of the largest salmon rivers in the world, the Fraser River, and sensitive ecological habitats such as Burns Bog.
I am greatly concerned as we the people are not given a say in how our region is being developed. I am also deeply concerned as the environmental impact assessment will be conducted by SNC Lavalin, which has a major role in the coal expansion project. This appears to be a conflict of interest.
For the sake of B.C., keep coal in the U.S.
The letter by Anita Huberman in The Leader of Oct. 31 stated “coal directly and indirectly employs 42,000 in Canada and contributes $5.2 billion to national GDP.”
What has this to do with the thermal coal from Wyoming, mined by U.S. miners, loaded on U.S. trains with U.S. crews, travelling on BNSF (U.S.) tracks? Talk about Canada getting the short end of the stick. How much does this benefit our GDP?
As well, letter writer Fred Perry needs to realize metallurgical coal, not thermal coal, is used in the manufacturing of motor vehicles.
For heaven’s sake and the sake of our beautiful province, keep the coal in the U.S. where it belongs.
David Gibbs, Surrey