Welcome to TAR FREE 613 – Dedicated to advocating against the proposed Energy East pipeline and exposing the serious and immediate risks it brings for the people of Ottawa.
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TransCanada wants to convert a gas pipeline into one that would transport toxic Tar Sands oil through Ottawa. This pipeline would carry up to 850,000 barrels a day (100 million litres) of Alberta’s tar through sensitive areas around the city including across the Rideau River. An oil spill in Ottawa is a serious threat, putting our residents’ health and wellbeing at risk. Find out more on our factsheet.
We are urging the public and city officials to reject this proposed pipeline, which would bring nothing but risks to the people of Ottawa.
- Our Water Supply. The pipeline is proposed to cross the Mississipi and Rideau Rivers. A spill could be devastating, eventually leading into the Ottawa River. Tar Sands oil also isn’t your father’s oil – it’s thick and heavy, and when it hits water, it sinks, making it impossible to fully clean up
- Our Health. To ship heavy Tar Sands crude, a number of toxic chemicals have to be added to thin out the stuff so it can travel through a pipeline. Those toxins have been blamed for health impacts in past Tar Sands spills
- Our Security. Pipeline spills are an inevitability. Every year, over 100 pipeline spills are recorded in Canada. TransCanada alone had 12 spills in their first year after building a similar pipeline in the US. And carrying Tar Sands oil only increases the risks of shipping that oil.
- Our Local Food. Oil spills pose an immediate threat to our sensitive ecosystem, water, and food sources. The rich farmlands surrounding the Ottawa Valley could suffer the same fate as Marshall, Michigan, where a major 2010 bitumen oil spill has cost over $1 billion and continues to contaminate the Kalamazoo River.
- Our Environment. Oil spills – like the March 2013 spill that sent a river of thick, toxic oil through Mayflower, Arkansas – have the potential to displace the nearly one million people living in the Ottawa region
- Our Climate. Energy East is one more step in the wrong direction for tar sands expansion and catastrophic climate change. Fossil fuels are a major contributor to climate change, which kills millions each year and causes endless destruction. The Energy East pipeline will only allow for the expansion of the Albertan Tar Sands, which have been called a ticking time bomb for the climate.
- More Trains. That’s right – despite the industry’s claims, building this pipeline would actually lead to more trains carrying dangerous loads. Why? Because to make the thick tar sands bitumen flow through the pipe, numerous dangerous hydrocarbons must be added to dilute the bitumen. When the oil gets to tankers on the coast, this diluent must be shipped back, by train – meaning potentially up to 500 cars per day of very dangerous diluent. You can read more in this report we’ve prepared.
Do you live near the pipeline?
The proposed Energy East Pipeline is all risk and no reward for the city of Ottawa and the world at large. We all have a stake and responsibility in protecting our environment and health, and keeping the 613 tar sands free!
WHAT YOU CAN DO
- Sign the online petition to stop the Energy East pipeline. This will also allow us to keep you informed of developing news, key events, and other ways you can get involved.
- Get informed! Learn more about the pipeline and risks. Download our factsheet here.
- Get even more informed! We’ve prepared a Guide to the Pipeline that should answer most questions in more depth. Get it here!
- Download a copy of the petition and take it to work, to school, to local events, wherever!
- We are asking people to distribute information kits in their neighbourhoods – please contact us if that interests you!
- Ask your elected leaders and provincial candidates what they will do to stop the proposed Energy East pipeline!
- Get the information out on social media! We’re using the tags #TarFree613 to talk about the issues. Follow us at @EcologyOttawa and on our Facebook page. You can also get more information by joining a Facebook group specifically about this pipeline – the Tar Free 613 Group.
- Get involved! We’re looking for volunteers and local leaders. Contact email@example.com to join the growing movement to keep 613 tar sands free!