Riverbank pipeline route may be unstable, St. Norbert advocates say
Energy East critics express concerns at community meeting Thursday
A group of St. Norbert community advocates are concerned that the bank of the La Salle River is too unstable to support the proposed route of the Energy East pipeline in the area.
"I don't think enough studies have been done to see what would be a better route. It's just way too close to our populations and our water," said Michelle Blanchette-Lavergne of Aurora Farms, one of the groups that organized a meeting in St. Norbert on Thursday.
"It's either people or water versus money and oil."
Blanchette-Lavergne is a member of a group made up of the St. Norbert Arts Centre, Aurora Farms and the Falcon Trails Resort, along with a scientist and a lawyer, who have intervenor status at pipeline hearings with the National Energy Board. They held the meeting in the community to let residents know about their concerns.
In 1996, a break in the TransCanada natural gas pipeline caused an explosion and burned down two homes in the community.
The St. Norbert intervenors say they're worried they'll see a repeat of the '96 rupture.
Blanchette-Lavergne said she's also worried the government isn't hearing community concerns.
"The government, I don't trust them at this point, or the process that's been put [in place] at this point, to be able to intervene on behalf of the public," she said.
"We have a lot of concerns and the people of the City of Winnipeg and St. Norbert should have a lot of concerns. But how do we know that within the process that's set forth that these concerns are being heard?"