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Vancouver's Vision sees pipelines as election focus

Jeremy Nuttall

By Jeremy Nuttall, 24 hours Vancouver

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. (CARMINE MARINELLI/ 24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson. (CARMINE MARINELLI/ 24 HOURS FILE PHOTO)

Opposing the twinning of the Trans Mountain pipeline that terminates in Burnaby appears to be a fight Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson wants to bring into this November’s election.

Robertson said Thursday part of his platform will be to “continue” fighting the Kinder Morgan project. The city has been granted intervener status.

Hundreds of applicants were denied or had their status downgraded and Robertson dismissed the notion a civic mayor should stay out of what many consider to be a pipeline in the national interest.

“Our economy and our environment are at great risk if there’s an oil spill in our harbour,” Robertson said. “I don’t have a lot of faith in the federal government process in pipeline approvals given they’ve shut out hundreds of people from this National Energy Board hearing.”

He accused the Non-Partisan Association of being pro-oil tankers and said they are out of touch with modern Vancouver.

Meanwhile, two more civic parties in Vancouver also appeared to be switching into campaign mode.

The Green Party announced candidates last week, including incumbent Adriane Carr.

The Coalition of Progressive Electors announced new appointments to its executive board over the weekend and council candidate Tim Louis said this time around the party will not be abstaining from running a mayoral candidate.

“Gone are the days where we would be a junior partner to Vision Vancouver, we are running a mayoral candidate and that candidate will be running to win,” Louis said. “So Gregor Robertson, look out.”

Louis said the party aims to run a campaign created by the party’s members rather than its upper echelon, and “put city council back in the hands of citizens,” referring to recent decisions made by Vancouver council.

“It means rezoning decisions will no longer be made before public hearings behind closed doors,” Louis said. “It means instead city council going into council chambers at the beginning of the public hearing with an open mind, open eyes and open ears.”

Robertson said he was not concerned about losing votes from areas where controversial changes have been made, such as the Kits bike lane.

“Everything we do has pros and cons and I expect we’ll have criticism, but we’ve heard lots of supportive voices across the city as well,” he said.




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