Submitted by Friends of the San Juans
Canada’s largest port, the Port of Vancouver, has proposed building a massive, new container-ship terminal, called Roberts Bank Terminal 2 (RBT2). The terminal will be located in the Fraser River Delta, less than a mile from Washington State.
The RBT2 terminal will be constructed over 437 acres of critical habitat for Southern Resident orcas, salmon, and migratory birds. RBT2 will increase container ship traffic by up to 520 shipping transits per year through the Salish Sea. RBT2 will also increase underwater noise impacts and the risk of ship strikes and accidents with hazardous materials and oil spills.
“In recent years, Washington State has made significant investments in the protection and recovery of our endangered Southern Resident orca. The analyses show clearly that RBT2 will put those investments at risk and impact the Southern Residents and their critical habitat,” said Lovel Pratt, Marine Protection and Policy Director with Friends of the San Juans.
Friends of the San Juans sent a letter to Governor Jay Inslee that was signed by 41 regional organizations and has also delivered a petition to the governor with 62,796 signatures from around the world, including 1,393 from Washington State. The letter and petition ask Governor Inslee to oppose RBT2. Further, if Canada still insists on approving this project, the letter and petition ask Governor Inslee to advocate for more protections for orca and the Salish Sea ecosystem.
“Thanks to our efforts, our Governor, who has shown repeatedly that he cares deeply about these issues, now knows that the environmental review for this project did not adequately address RBT2 impacts to Washington State’s environmental, economic, and cultural resources. We urge Governor Inslee to speak up on behalf of Washington State citizens, of Tribal Treaty Rights, and of everyone who cares about Southern Resident orca and the health of the Salish Sea,” said Brent Lyles, Executive Director with Friends of the San Juans.
Learn more about RBT2 and how you can take action at www.sanjuans.org/action-center.