Oil transportation threatens the natural resources of the St. Lawrence

Oil transportation in the St. Lawrence River watershed threatens its rich and fragile biodiversity, but not only. Did you know that the St. Lawrence is also the source of drinking water for more than 3.7 million people, or 45% of the population of Québec?

A study published recently by CPAWS Québec, the David Suzuki Foundation and the World Wide Fund for Nature concludes that an increase in oil exportation projects by rail, pipeline or oil tanker on the St. Lawrence and along its shores involves risks not only to the preservation of the biodiversity of the river, but also to the drinking water supply of 54 Québec towns.

Over the next few years, the TransCanada Energy East and Enbridge Line 9b pipeline projects, as well as projects by Suncor and Valero involving oil transportation by rail and oil tanker, will more than quadruple the amount of oil being transported along the St. Lawrence, bringing the total to more than 1.4 million barrels per day.
In spite of government and industry assurances, there were at least 19 major spills of at least a million litres, and nearly 950 smaller spills, from 2004 to 2013 in Canada.
By turning the St. Lawrence into an oil highway, our drinking water will be directly threatened. Are we willing to take this risk?

As a result of the disaster in Lac-Mégantic in July 2013, tens of thousands of litres of oil spilled into the Chaudière River, depriving 188,000 people in Lévis and Sainte-Marie and Saint-Georges in the Beauce of drinking water for more than two months.
In January 2015, an accidental spill of 28,000 litres of diesel left 300,000 people in Longueuil without drinking water.
If a rupture were to occur, this amount would spill from the Energy East pipeline in 14 seconds! The minimum time needed for TransCanada to stop a leak would be 10 minutes, thereby allowing 1.2 million litres to spill.

We can prevent further attacks on our drinking water through opposition to the St. Lawrence becoming an oil highway.

Write to your mayor, to the Minister of the Environment, to the Minister of Sustainable Development and to Fight Climate Change, as well as to the Premier of Québec, to tell them that no compromise regarding our drinking water must be made.

Drinking water is an infinitely precious resource. Protect it! Protect our river and its ecosystems.