BC Environment Minister labelled "Clueless".

The BC NDP has labelled Liberal Environment Minister Barry Penner "clueless" for apparently being unaware that a near-tragedy occurred last week when the 241 metre cargo ship the Hebei Lion hit Conconi Reef off Mayne Island during high winds.
"It is clear that the latest round of B.C. Liberal cuts to the environment ministry has left the province with greatly reduced capacity for environmental monitoring and response," said [NDP Environment Critic Rob] Fleming. "This incident had the potential to be a catastrophe and the environment minister wasn't even aware it had happened."
To be fair, it is unclear whether Mr. Fleming would have been aware of this incident much earlier than today either, given that the media in general has not found this environmental bullet that Gulf Islanders dodged last week to be worthy of reporting upon. If the tide has not been rising that evening when the bulk carrier hit the reef, this ship, which can carry up to 2 million gallons of heavy fuel, could have been ripped open. We who live on these islands are well aware of the potential catastrophe that we luckily avoided.

Fleming questioned how we could trust the government to watch out for our environment if they succeed in bringing oil tanker traffic to these waters, when they don't appear to take notice of incidents with conventional shipping.

Links to this story: CFAX 1070
BC NDP

Update: photo of the 241 metre Hebei Lion, earlier this year.


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