CAJ & WEBSTER WINNER 2014: Cross Border Coal War

Five-part series published in The Tyee | Nov-May, 2013 | Circulation: 340,000

Winner, Canadian Association of Journalists 2013 Community Media Award

Winner, Jack Webster Foundation 2013 Community Reporting Award


As North American producers massively ramp up plans to export coal to Asia, B.C. figures large in their plans — and in opposition efforts of citizens worried about climate change. Photo by David P. Ball

 

I. COAL PORT TO CHINA BARGES AHEAD WITHOUT PUBLIC SUPPORT: ACTIVISTS

NOV. 26, 2012A plan to significantly expand a Surrey coal port — allowing it to export four million metric tonnes of the fossil fuel a year, mostly to China, and potentially doubling that later — is pushing ahead quietly without much public awareness or input, says a climate change activist group.
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II. BACKED BY POLL, ACTIVISTS RAKE PORT METRO VANCOUVER OVER COALS

DEC. 7, 2012—Port Metro Vancouver (PMV) has acknowledged growing public anxiety about BC coal exports plans, after environmentalists warn the proposals will lead to carbon emissions between six and 26 million tonnes greater than the controversial Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline.
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III. SOUTH OF BORDER, HOT DEBATE INVOLVES BC COAL PORT PLANS

MARCH 7, 2013—Across the B.C.-Washington border, plans to ramp up coal exports are the focus of heated environmental concern, economic lobbying, and rising controversy over Canada’s role in the trade. It’s one of the very rare instances where Americans are more aware of a Canadian issue than vice-versa.
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IV. COAL OPPONENTS FORGING CROSS-BORDER TIES

MARCH 8, 2013—As dawn broke, I approached a quiet White Rock railway crossing beside the beach. The only sounds at this early hour were a seagull’s cries and the fluttering of sheets of paper taped to a post waving like small flags in the quiet before a battle: a judge’s injunction.
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V. BURNING QUESTIONS OVER COAL PORT PLAN

MAY 1, 2013—As the sudden swell of B.C.’s role in the global coal trade becomes a burning issue for environmental advocates, The Tyee talks to Fraser Surrey Docks’ CEO about how his project to expand exports should interest the province.
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