IN THE HOUSE ~ Question ~ on tanker safety report

    Mr. Peter Julian (Burnaby—New Westminster, NDP): Mr. Speaker, yesterday's tanker safety report identified major gaps in safety planning, leaving Canadians profoundly concerned.The panel found response-time standards will not be enough to contain spills, even in ideal conditions. At most, 15% of oil spilled into our water and along our coast can be recovered.

    Yet Conservatives are ignoring the liabilities faced by taxpayers and stubbornly pushing for more tanker traffic, which increases the risk to our coastlines and to our communities.

    Will the minister put aside the spin, start being responsible, and at the very least enact these recommendations?

    Mr. Jeff Watson (Parliamentary Secretary to the Minister of Transport, CPC): Mr. Speaker, our government is committed to protecting the safety of Canadians and the environment. Our government's goal in creating the expert panel was to review Canada's current tanker safety system with an eye to improvement. We welcome the panel's findings, which will serve as an important part of achieving a world-class tanker safety system.

    However, do not take my word for it. Here is what B.C.'s environment minister said: “I have a high degree of confidence that they are serious about achieving the goals that we have in front of us, and serious about the safety of our coast and the transportation of tankers up and down our coastlineâ€�.


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