B.C. 'extremely' concerned about answers coming out of pipeline hearings

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PRINCE GEORGE, B.C. - Final hearings into the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline project will resume today, but so far, the province is not impressed.

B.C. Environment Minister Terry Lake issued a statement after the hearings ended Wednesday, saying his government is "extremely concerned" about the answers it's getting from Enbridge (TSX:ENB).

Lake says the responses provided by company experts to questions from B.C. government lawyers have been incomplete or lacking in commitment.

He says the first two days of hearings showed Enbridge has not committed to new technology that could detect very small leaks or an automatic shut-down mechanism in the case of a possible leak, opting instead for manual shutdown.

The company's experts told the panel there are five leak-detection systems planned for the line that will carry diluted bitumen from Alberta to a tanker port on the B.C. coast, and new technologies are always being assessed.

Enbridge experts will be questioned yet on emergency preparedness and response.

Organizations: Enbridge, TSX

Geographic location: B.C., PRINCE GEORGE, Northern Gateway Alberta

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