Claremont’s Troy Patterson started an online petition last month calling for construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline to stop. The petition now has over 23,000 signatures. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

Claremont’s Troy Patterson started an online petition last month calling for construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline to stop. The petition now has over 23,000 signatures. (Jake Romphf/News Staff)

B.C. teen’s petition to stop Coastal GasLink pipeline garners over 23,000 signatures

Greater Victoria student worried about potential impact on Great Bear Rainforest, marine life

When a Greater Victoria teenager’s petition against the Coastal GasLink pipeline got to 200 signatures last month, his aunt congratulated him on its progress. He responded by telling her he hoped it would reach 800 signatures by March.

A week later, the petition was at 16,000.

“It totally blew me away,” said Troy Patterson.

The Claremont Secondary School student’s petition is now at over 23,000 signatures. The petition calls for construction of the pipeline to stop as Patterson is concerned about its potential impact on the Great Bear Rainforest and marine life.

“This is one of the last wild places in B.C.,” Patterson said. “I thought ‘What can I do as a youth?’ and I thought a petition would be the best way to go about that.”

Patterson first got involved in environmentalism about a year ago, after he visited an old-growth forest. That interest in conservation has continued to grow as he’s currently taking a course in school that revolves around the environment.

The 15-year-old said environmental issues have fallen out of the spotlight during the pandemic.

“I needed to bring this back up so people can remember and start to make a change.”

READ: Coastal GasLink begins COVID screening of pipeline workers

Once completed, TC Energy’s 670-kilometre Coastal GasLink pipeline will transport natural gas from the Dawson Creek area to the LNG Canada export facility in Kitimat, where the company says it’ll be converted into liquefied natural gas and shipped to global markets.

One of Patterson’s main concerns is the impact on wildlife if LNG carrier-ship traffic increases in the province’s northern waters. One species he’s worried about is the endangered fin whale – which the federal government says can be found in some deep channels between islands along British Columbia’s northern coast.

“The marine ecosystem is much at stake here,” Patterson said. “The tankers have to traverse some quite sharp turns and passages.”

Patterson has reached out to Premier John Horgan, Environment Minister George Heyman, Forests Minister Katrine Conroy and several local MLAs to raise his concerns.

“I think in B.C. we’re quite connected to the environment with it all right in our backyard,” Patterson said. “I would like to see the B.C. government recognize it too and push to a more sustainable future.”

The province’s Ministry of Environment and Climate Change Strategy said the pipeline’s construction and operation “will not involve any effects to marine life or marine traffic.”

“Nor does the pipeline cross the Great Bear Rainforest and, as such, these effects were not assessed for the Coastal GasLink project,” an email from the ministry said.

”Regarding the LNG Canada project, impacts on marine shipping and marine life were considered through the environmental assessment certificate process.”

For more news from Vancouver Island and beyond delivered daily into your inbox, please click here.

Coastal GasLinkoak bay

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

The physically distanced, masked, outdoor protest was organized by Fridays For Future West-Kootenay and XR Nelson in solidarity with the Fairy Creek Blockades on Vancouver Island. Photo: Submitted
Demonstrators rally outside Castlegar MLA’s office in support of Fairy Creek Watershed blockaders

The event was held at Minister of Forests Katrine Conroy’s office

letter
LETTER: Federal government missing the mark during pandemic

Reader Fred Hughes says political leaders and parties need to be held responsible

FILE — In this March 31, 2021 file photo, a nurse fills a syringe with a dose of the Johnson & Johnson’s one-dose COVID-19 vaccine at the Vaxmobile, at the Uniondale Hempstead Senior Center, in Uniondale, N.Y. The U.S. is recommending a “pause” in administration of the single-dose Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine to investigate reports of potentially dangerous blood clots. In a joint statement Tuesday, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration said it was investigating clots in six women in the days after vaccination, in combination with reduced platelet counts. (AP Photo/Mary Altaffer, File)
72 new COVID-19 cases in Interior Health

This brings the total number of cases in the region to 9,666 since the pandemic began

Photo collage of loved ones lost to substance use and overdose. (Photo courtesy Moms Stop The Harm)
B.C. overdose deaths still rising 5 years after public health emergency declared

Moms Stop the Harm calls on B.C. to provide safe supply in response to deadly illicit drug use

Police are advising of a scam actively happening in the Kootenay Boundary, one that involves a person trying to sell the victim gold for cash. Problem is, the gold is fake. Photo: Matt Flores on Unsplash
Fake gold scam re-surfaces in the Kootenay Boundary

Victims are approached in high-traffic areas by someone claiming to need emergency cash

A person receives a COVID-19 vaccine at a vaccination clinic run by Vancouver Coastal Health, in Richmond, B.C., Saturday, April 10, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS
B.C. sees 873 more COVID-19 cases Tuesday, decline continues

Hospitalizations up to 377, two more deaths for 1,515 total

An unidentified B.C. man said he was refused the job after refusing to wear a mask when asked by an on-site manager. (Unsplash)
Religious B.C. man lodges human rights complaint after fired for refusing to wear a mask

‘To cover up our face infringes on our God-given ability to breathe,’ the worker claimed

This 2013 Dodge Ram 1500 was stolen from Black Creek Motors at approximately 2 a.m. Sunday, April 11. Photos via blackcreekmotors.com
VIDEO: B.C. car dealer posts clip of thieves towing a truck right off his lot

Video shows one white truck towing another off Vancouver Island lot

FILE – People hold signs during a memorial march to remember victims of overdose deaths in Vancouver on Saturday, August 15, 2020. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. to request federal exemption for simple drug possession

Announcement comes on 5-year anniversary of B.C.’s first public health emergency

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

(AP Photo/Matthias Schrader, FIle)
Rare blood clots ‘may be linked’ to AstraZeneca vaccines: Health Canada

One case of the adverse effect has been reported in Canada

Restaurant patrons enjoy the weather on a patio in Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. The province has restricted indoor dining at all restaurants in B.C. due to a spike in COVID-19 numbers. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
B.C.’s COVID-19 indoor dining, drinking ban extending into May

Restaurant association says patio rules to be clarified

Two men walk past a sign on Main Street in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Monday, April 5, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Calls for government transparency in COVID data continue as B.C.’s 3rd wave wears on

Social media, where both information and misinformation can spread like wildfire, has not helped

Two men were seen removing red dresses alongside the Island Highway in Oyster Bay. (Submitted photo)
Observers ‘gutted’ as pair filmed removing red dresses hung along B.C. highway

Activists hung the dresses to raise awareness for Indigenous Murdered/Missing Women & Girls

Most Read