I went down to Victoria's Inner Harbour to talk with Simon Fawkes, skipper of the Aerial Sea, a solar powered catamaran sailing vessel, as it winds up its Salish Sea Tour. Here's how they describe the tour: Salish Sea Tour hits Victoria as Nexen Spill Rocks Alberta
by Wilderness Committee
Communities visited during solar-powered tour echo call to stop Kinder Morgan
VICTORIA – An interactive tour connecting Salish Sea residents against the Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline and tanker proposal arrives in Victoria tomorrow. The team of activists leading the 2015 Salish Sea Tour left Vancouver on July 4th on a solar-powered catamaran called Aerial Sea, and visited several communities along the Kinder Morgan tanker route.
The two-week tour wraps up tomorrow in Victoria, where the Aerial Sea will be docked at Ship Point in the Inner Harbour from noon until 4 p.m. Meanwhile, one of the largest oil spills in Canada’s history has just taken place along a new Nexen pipeline in northern Alberta, close to Fort McMurray.
While the focus of the Salish Sea Tour has been on positive solutions to climate change around the region, organizers are also highlighting the fact that dangerous projects like Kinder Morgan’s have no place in a healthy future here.
“The Salish Sea is one of the best places to live in the world – it’s not a sacrifice zone for Big Oil,” said Torrance Coste, Vancouver Island Campaigner for the Wilderness Committee.
“In every corner of this region, we’ve heard from communities that Kinder Morgan has absolutely no place in our future.”
The Tour has made stops in Vancouver, Steveston, Salt Spring Island and Pender Island – all places directly threatened by the heightened oil spill risk and intensified climate change that Kinder Morgan’s proposed project would bring to the region.
“The Nexen spill is yet another reminder of the dangers of oil transport. We are doing this tour to highlight the fact that there are better alternatives that we should be embracing. We don’t need to take all the risk of new oil pipelines and increased tanker traffic. We could be on a path to reduced consumption today,” said Ben West, Executive Director of Tanker Free BC.
Saturday’s afternoon event on the Aerial Sea will be followed by an evening gathering (7-9 p.m.) at Solstice Café featuring film, speakers and musical acts including Luke Wallace, a Vancouver-based folk artist and co-organizer of the tour.
“As the Salish Sea Tour comes to a close, we have had a successful couple weeks visiting communities all along the Kinder Morgan tanker route. Our tour has been capped off dramatically with a massive spill in Alberta,” said Wallace.
“We are inviting everyone to come down and join us at the public dock and at our event in the evening, to celebrate what is possible as an alternative to more pipelines and tankers.”
As a spin-off event the following day, the Wilderness Committee is organizing a tour of the T’sou-ke Solar Community – an innovative First Nation’s solar project just outside Victoria – to show that solutions to dirty energy projects like the Kinder Morgan pipeline are here and thriving.
The Salish Sea Tour is organized by the Wilderness Committee, Tanker Free BC, Salish Sea Keepers and Luke Wallace. More details at www.Facebook.com/SalishSeaTour
For Immediate Release – July 17, 2015