Container cargo tonnage is the key figure and in 2015 it only increased by 2 percent. In Vancouver imports are the real driver of container volumes and laden imports only increased by 2 percent in terms of units or 3 percent in units, TEUs (twenty-foot equivalents). These are not great numbers – certainly not record setting. And considering that PMV handled even more US containers in 2015 – 25 percent of PMV volumes – it confirms that Canadian container growth is stalled. Not only that but handling US containers adds nothing to the Canadian economy. PMV’s consultant had projected that PMV would handle over 3.15 million TEU in 2015. Actuals were more than 100,000 less – the need for T2 is not there, yet PMV keeps plowing ahead with this project. Future growth in container traffic is estimated to be well below 5 percent. With already planned expansions at two existing terminals in Vancouver and one in Prince Rupert there will be 3 million additional units added on the west coast by 2020.
All this demonstrates that the $3.5 billion plus second container terminal on Roberts Bank is just not needed – now nor any time in the foreseeable future. With expansion planned for existing Vancouver terminals plus at Prince Rupert’s container port, all of British Columbia’s container ports have capacity to handle CANADIAN container volumes for many years to come, – WITHOUT BUILDING ROBERTS BANK TERMINAL2.
The T2 proposal has a seriously flawed business case and will result in huge risks to the Roberts Bank ecosystem – the most important ecosystem in Canada in terms of its abundant wildlife and biodiversity.
The new government and the MP for Delta need to hear from you.
Tell them not to allow T2 to be built. Tell them you do not want the unneeded and hugely destructive Terminal 2.
They need to hear this – again and again.
By looking at the commercial and financial considerations the research shows that there are significant issues with the business case for T2. The projections for future growth appear to be highly inflated. The assumptions of effective capacity of existing West Coast container terminals and the potential for their expansion are not correctly portrayed. There are significant rail issues. There are huge potential risks for the financing of the project. If built it would have the dubious distinction of being one of the most expensive port projects in the world.
In reviewing the values of the Roberts Bank ecosystem we believe that there is a real danger that T2 will result in irreparable harm to one of the most important areas of wildlife abundance and biodiversity in the whole of North America. The T2 project is likely to cause damage if not outright destruction of bird species, especially the Western Sandpiper. It will cause further disturbance to fish and crab habitat, to areas critical to the very survival of marine mammals, especially the already endangered Orca whale population. The risks are severe; the impacts will be immediate, irreversible and cannot be mitigated.
The potential for further disruption to surrounding communities will result in increased air pollution; further traffic congestion; greater pressure on valuable agricultural land; and increased noise and light pollution.