Wolverine Terminals’ marine fuel service project took its first swipe at public engagement on Tuesday, Oct. 17.
Company representatives pitched an ‘Adamantium proof’ concept to bring the off-shore facility to the Port of Prince Rupert allowing cargo ships to fuel up on the North Coast rather then at another West Coast port.
Residents attended the open house at the Crest Hotel to learn more from the project proposed for the south end of the Westview Wood Pellet Terminal.
President of the company, Serge Bisson, said they have been exploring the project’s potential for the past two years, and have been in consultation with First Nations groups for up to a year.
“We’re at the first of our public open houses collecting feedback from the public and we’ll take all that and go back to the port and review everything together including Transport Canada,” Bisson said.
A few residents who live along Graham Avenue and in the area near the pellet terminal came to submit their comments and ask questions concerning more industry development on the waterfront.
“We’re all here because we were lied to about the Pinnacle pellet plant and we need to make sure that doesn’t happen again,” said Jan Jesser, who lives on Graham Avenue. The fuel barge is proposed to be located below his house.
He inquired about the noise and the possibility of it catching on fire — but so far he’s been ensured that isn’t going to happen. “I want straight answers, which I’ve got so far,” he said. He’s still worried about noise and smell coming from the facility.
“They won’t hear the operations. Engineering absorbs all of that. The rail operations we can’t speak to CN. Smell, there will be no odours. Any exhaust emissions from pressure balance in the tanks will go through filters and there’s standard engineering design to take all of the odour out so we don’t think there will be any odours,” Bisson said.
Another resident came to leave his comment that jobs created for the project should come from the region.
“I’m inquiring about employment opportunities for young people and what certifications the company is looking for from people who are seeking employment,” Mike Calli, who owns and operates Capp’s Marine Education.
The company said the project will create approximately 13 full-time jobs for residents.
Comments on the project will be accepted between Oct. 5 until Nov. 5. Currently, Wolverine is preparing their environmental effects evaluation to submit early 2018. The port is leading the regulatory approval process and will review the Prince Rupert Marine Fuels Service project.
Wolverine Terminals is aiming for regulatory approval by mid-2018 and to be operational by mid-2019.