Ecojustice Blog – Climate change Posted on November 20, 2015 (updated: March 29, 2017)

Take action: Oil by rail projects need thorough environmental assessments

Ecojustice lawyer Charles HattCharles HattEcojustice Alumni
Oil train with sunset
Photo by Papa1266 via Shutterstock

Have you heard of the Hardisty Rail Terminal Project? If not, you should.

The project would send up to 336,000 barrels of crude oil by rail  from Hardisty, Alberta to refineries around North America every day. That’s more oil than flows through Enbridge’s Line 9 pipeline, or Kinder Morgan’s existing TransMountain pipeline. That’s more than half the planned capacity of Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline. As I said, it’s a lot of oil!

What’s more, this would continue for at least the next 25 years. This when scientific research tells us we need to start leaving that oil in the ground.

We know that locking in more carbon-intensive infrastructure will not help us reduce carbon pollution and combat climate change. And we know that putting more oil trains on the tracks means a greater chance of explosive derailments, risking public safety and the environment.

That’s why Ecojustice lawyers will be telling the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, on behalf of Greenpeace Canada and Safe Rail Communities, that we need an environmental assessment of the Hardisty Rail Terminal Project.

You can help too. Right now the Agency is asking the public whether the project deserves an environmental assessment. Public comments are being accepted until November 30. Why not join our clients and submit your comments by email today? Here’s what you might say:

  • This project could facilitate expansion of the tar sands, increasing Canada’s carbon pollution. We need an environmental assessment to look at this project’s effect on climate change.
  • The tragedy of Lac-Mégantic and other explosive derailments across North America show the risks of moving oil by rail. We need an environmental assessment before we put any more oil trains on the tracks.

Let’s tell the Agency that this project needs a thorough environmental assessment.

Please note: The website for the Environmental Assessment Agency has been very slow.  If you have having difficulty accessing their website, you can submit your comments via email to:

Comment period closed

Oil by rail photo by Papa1266 via Shutterstock

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