Myths and Realities

Debunking the myths

When it comes to B.C.’s economy, we cannot afford to make decisions based on assumptions or misguided information. Below, we have reviewed some of the common myths and provide the reality of these situations, backed with evidence and facts. Myths often contribute to public perception about major projects, so it is necessary to review and debunk these myths. Spread the word about these common misconceptions with your network.

Myth:

We either develop our natural resources or protect our environment

Reality:

Natural resource development often has economic and environmental benefits. The Site C dam, for example, will generate electricity that is reliable and cost-effective, but also renewable and very low-carbon.

Environmental improvement is built into new resource-related developments and facilities. When Rio Tinto recently doubled its smelter capacity at Kitimat, it also nearly halved its the overall air emissions.

Myth:

Oil is only for transportation and heating

Reality:

Oil is woven deeply into our everyday lives. It’s part of the raw materials for plastics, synthetics and chemicals that in turn are made into clothing, shampoo, floor coverings, medications, home appliances, and thousands of other day-to-day items.

Myth:

LNG will have a huge carbon impact

Reality:

Legislation is in place to ensure BC’s LNG facilities are the cleanest in the world – with a benchmark for greenhouse gas emissions well below leading global facilities. Plus LNG is the cleanest burning of any fossil fuel.

Myth:

We could get by without natural resources revenues

Reality:

Natural resource royalties alone contribute billions to the funding of public services – in some years outstripping the combined contribution of Crown corporations, including BC Hydro, ICBC, the liquor stores and others.

Myth:

Natural resources only matter in rural BC

Reality:

Resource industries rely heavily on professional and other often urban goods and services providers. In fact, 55% of all jobs generated by BC’s resource industries are in the Lower Mainland.

Myth:

Natural resources aren’t part of the “green economy”

Reality:

An industry such as forestry can exist only as long as healthy forests do, and is on the forefront of environmental innovation – BC’s forest sector, for example, is North America’s largest producer of green bioenergy.

Myth:

Oil and gas has a huge footprint on the landbase

Reality:

Only 2.28% of the land base in Northeast BC is used for oil-and-gas activities – much of it under exploration rather than active use. And natural gas activity uses 0.01% of the region’s annual surface water runoff.

Myth:

We ship too many of our resources unprocessed

Reality:

Manufacturing accounts for about $14 billion in provincial GDP and more than 160,000 jobs in BC – and most provincial manufacturing activity involves transforming our natural resources into value-added products.

Myth:

No one’s building major new project these days

Reality:

In 2011-2014 five new mines opened in BC, creating >1,300 jobs, with five more under construction or approved. And Rio Tinto’s just-completed Kitimat smelter expansion was the largest private-sector investment in BC history.

Myth:

Environmental protection laws are weak

Reality:

The BC environmental assessment process for major projects typically requires 12-18 months of information-gathering and consultation before an application can even be made, followed by months or more of formal review. Even as green a project as run-of-river hydroelectricity typically requires more than 50 permits, licenses, approvals and reviews from over a dozen agencies, with broad consultations and extensive permit conditions.

The Independent Contractors and Businesses Association of British Columbia

By providing your email address, you agree to receive emails from ICBA. You may unsubscribe at any time. Thank you for supporting responsible development.
SUCCESS. THANK YOU FOR SUPPORTING RESPONSIBLE DEVELOPMENT.
* Required field