Laval 'firmly against' Energy East pipeline, Marc Demers says

Laval Mayor Marc Demers says the pipeline presents an "unreasonable safety risk" to Laval's waterways, drinking water, agricultural land and residential neighbourhoods.

Mayor Marc Demers says he met with TransCanada officials and was not reassured

Laval Mayor Marc Demers is expected Wednesday to announce his city hopes to lead a coalition of municipalities against TransCanada's proposed Energy East pipeline. (Radio-Canada)

Laval Mayor Marc Demers has announced the city strongly opposes the proposed Energy East pipeline project.

Demers said today the pipeline presents an "unreasonable safety risk" to Laval's waterways, drinking water, agricultural land and residential neighbourhoods.

"We are against it — firmly against it," he said.

Demers said the thought of a major leak or explosion "sends shivers down my spine."

He said he met with officials from TransCanada and was not reassured.

TransCanada spokesman Tim Duboyce said Demers is being premature.

Duboyce said the project is complex but that TransCanada is committed to working with municipalities to provide all the information they require.

He said Laval's stance will not change TranasCanada's determination to proceed with Energy East.

The proposed Energy East project would see TransCanada ship 1.1 million barrels of oil per day from Alberta to New Brunswick, passing through several municipalities in Quebec.

Dozens of other smaller municipalities in the province have already expressed reservations or outright opposition to the project.

Montreal Mayor Denis Coderre has not taken an official position, but has called the project "risky" and expressed doubts about its economic benefits.

Seven smaller municipalities are backing the project.

The plan for the Energy East pipeline and ports. (Radio-Canada)

The exact route of the pipeline is still unknown, but it would pass through parts of Laval, Demers said.

​He said the city will present its position at a series of upcoming public consultations launched by the Montreal Metropolitan Community.

TransCanada has already said it will not participate in the consultations.

The proposed pipeline would cross parts of Montreal, Laval and the suburbs stretching from L'Assomption to Rigaud. (CMM)