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Enbridge Inc. must be held to a high corporate standard in living up to the agreements they have made. Their website tends to boast about how they are leading Corporate Citizens.

From their website we read this:

“Responding to Environmental PrioritiesEnbridge is engaged in environmental stewardship activities to reduce the impact of our operations on the environment.

In 2003, Enbridge became a signatory to the United Nations Global Compact, an international initiative in support of human rights, labour and the environment.

Why then is Enbridge Inc. so interested in developing the Northern Gateway Pipeline Project or the Line 9 Project which would expand the developement in the Oil Sands and by doing so:

  • encourage and be party to further production of GHG emissions adding to the pollution of the atmosphere and the consequences of climate change,
  • further the degradation of the ecosystem surrounding the Oil Sands causing loss of biodiversity and long-term damage,
  • further pollution of the Athabasca River Valley and MacKenzie River system promoting damage to aquatic ecosystems,
  • encourage further land degradation along with the impacts of chemicals use and disposal and continual waste production

What then is the Enbridge Inc. Environmental Priority or is it just all talk?

Just what did Enbridge Inc. sign on to?

United Nations Global Compact  –   Environment

Principle 7: Businesses should support a precautionary approach to environmental challenges;
Principle 8: undertake initiatives to promote greater environmental responsibility; and
Principle 9: encourage the development and diffusion of environmentally friendly technologies.

The Origin of the Environment Principles

Internationally co-ordinated work on the environment has been led by the United Nations Environment Programme (UNEP), since its inception in 1973. UNEP has provided leadership and encouraged partnerships to care for the environment, for example, through Multilateral Environmental Agreements (MEAs) which have addressed issues such as species loss and the need for conservation at a global and regional level. UNEP has created much of the international environmental law in use today.

The three environmental principles of the Global Compact are drawn from a Declaration of Principles and an International Action Plan (Agenda 21) that emerged from the United Nations Conference on Environment and Development (the Earth Summit) held in Rio de Janerio in 1992. Chapter 30 of Agenda 21, identified that the policies and operations of business and industry can play a major role in reducing impacts on resource use and the environment. In particular, business can contribute through the promotion of cleaner production and responsible entrepreneurship.

The environmental principles of the Global Compact provide an entry point for business to address the key environmental challenges. In particular, the principles direct activity to areas such as research, innovation, co-operation, education, and self-regulation that can positively address the significant environmental degradation, and damage to the planet’s life support systems, brought by human activity.

Key Environmental Challenges

  • loss of biodiversity and long-term damage to ecosystems
  • pollution of the atmosphere and the consequences of climate change
  • damage to aquatic ecosystems
  • land degradation
  • the impacts of chemicals use and disposal
  • waste production
  • depletion of non-renewable resources