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Burnaby MP tables anti-pipeline petition in Parliament

It was the most-signed petition Kennedy Stewart has ever presented in Parliament.
MP Kennedy Stewart spoke at the anti-pipeline rally on Saturday.

It was the most-signed petition Kennedy Stewart has ever presented in Parliament.

On March 25, the Burnaby-Douglas MP tabled a petition calling on the federal government to oppose Kinder Morgan's pipeline expansion, which would run through Burnaby if approved.

"The signatories note this export-only crude oil pipeline brings massive environmental and economic risk but no real benefits for local residents. This is without a doubt the No. 1 issue facing Burnaby, and my office has never received so many petitions before from constituents," he said in the House of Commons. "While I know the Conservatives and Liberals both support the new Kinder Morgan pipeline, I urge the government to take this call to oppose this pipeline very seriously, Mr. Speaker."

According to Stewart, there were an estimated 3,000 signatures on the petition, and most were from Burnaby.

Stewart said local constituents drafted the petition, but his office helped circulate and promote it. Once tabled, the Minister of Natural Resources has 45 days to respond.

Kinder Morgan is proposing a $5.4 billion expansion to the Trans Mountain pipeline, the only line that runs oil from Alberta to B.C.'s West Coast. The proposal includes expanding the Burnaby Mountain tank farm and the Westridge Marine Terminal in the Burrard Inlet, where tankers fill up on crude.

The National Energy Board is reviewing the proposal and is scheduled to deliver its decision on Jan. 25, 2016, however, the final say on whether the line will be built lies with cabinet, which the Conservatives now control. 

The next federal election is scheduled for Oct. 19, unless Prime Minister Stephen Harper calls an early spring election.