Our first Credible Conversations forum was held May 29th in Vancouver. Over 100 business leaders, entrepreneurs, politicians, First Nations representatives and BC residents came together to discuss the economic risks of pipeline expansion and explore how to build a more diversified economy on the west coast.
*These are rough notes from the break-out sessions and are not meant to convey the opinions of all CRED members, or even all participants in the break-out group.
What does cross-sectoral mean?
- Interdisciplinary, multifaceted, coming from different perspectives
- Inclusivity and diversity, bridge between cultures
- How sectors can work together
- Shared interests, big picture
- Directing forces and ideas
- Common / shared interests, collaboration
- Includes unions
How might a new oil pipeline affect the west coast’s economy?
- Increased reliance on foreign investment
- Risk of skills drain
- Free trade deals (contradictions)
- No local energy security plan
- Chevron jobs at risk?
- Climate change risks
- Costs of oil spills – insufficient insurance, tourism/cruise ships, attracting talent
- Kills innovation in alternative energies
- Impacts the region’s livability
- No long-term benefits locally
- Lower taxes, more funds for health care & education
- Jobs: construction, oil sands jobs
- Strength of Canadian economy – global position as resource leader
- Strengthen trade relationships with the US, China
- Increased global oil supply
- Pipelines are cheaper and safer than rail or road transportation
- Return on RRSPs / equity market will benefit
- What does a transition away from oil dependence look like as opposed to a crash?
- Where else could tax revenues come from? (Carbon tax?)
- More conversations on the oil economy vs the green economy
- Need to break through the spin
- Are people intimidated to speak up against real or perceived business interests?