Thursday January 26, 2023
Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue SFU
580 West Hastings Street
Vancouver, BC


The UN Secretary General is very clear and vocal about the threat to global health and well-being from climate change. Secretary Guterres is also clear that no new fossil energy infrastructure should be built. The Government of Canada, however, argues that we should be allowed to continue expanding our oil and gas emissions well past 2030 and justifies this position based upon the profits to be made. This panel will examine the hidden costs of major Canadian fossil energy projects using the Trans Mountain Expansion project as a case-study, with consideration of work planned and ongoing on Wet’suet’en territory in Northern BC. Charlene Aleck of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation will discuss the social and liability expense to her nation as they try to protect their rights and title to the lands and waters of Burrard Inlet. Eugene Kung, Attorney with Westcoast Environmental Law, will speak from the 2022 report with Robyn Allen regarding the $17 B writedown that will be required for the Government to sell off the project as promised; Kevin Cromar, Associate Professor of Environmental Health at NYU speaking to the social costs of 560,000 addition barrels of oil per day being extracted from the tarsands and burned, and Marc Lee, Senior Economist with the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives will round out the panel with a discussion of the costs and absence of necessity outlined in the Oct. 2020 CCPA report by David Hughes, entitled, “Reassessment of Need for the Trans Mountain Pipeline Expansion Project”. Join us for an informative dialogue on January 26.


Elodie Jacquet, Manager of Knowledge and Practice at Simon Fraser University’s Morris J. Wosk Centre for Dialogue.


Marc Lee – Marc Lee is a Senior Economist at the CCPA’s BC Office. In addition to tracking federal and provincial budgets and economic trends, Marc has published on a range of topics from poverty and inequality to globalization and international trade to public services and regulation. Marc is Co-Director of the Climate Justice Project, a research partnership with UBC’s School of Community and Regional Planning that examines the links between climate change policies and social justice.

Charlene Aleck, Ts’simtelot (invited) – Four-term Elected Councillor with the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation, and Cultural Ambassador for the Nation. Charlene is a granddaughter of Chief Dan George, an actress, known for The Beachcombers (1972) and The New Beachcombers (2002), a mother and grandmother. She is also a former teacher and active participant with Children of Takaya and performs throughout Coast Salish Territory. She has engaged deeply on Trans Mountain issues for her nation and is spokesperson for the Sacred Trust.

Eugene Kung – Eugene Kung is a staff lawyer with West Coast Environmental Law Association, his areas of focus include Tar Sands, Tankers and Pipelines, as well as Revitalizing Indigenous Laws for Land Air and Water (RELAW) – a partnership with UVic Law School’s Indigenous Law Research Unit. Mr. Kung has taught principles of energy regulation and energy literacy at UBC Law school and at the Law Foundation of BC Legal Advocacy Training Course.

Kevin Cromar – Kevin Cromar, Ph.D., is a program director at the Marron Institute of Urban Management and an Associate Professor of Environmental Medicine and Population Health at New York University Grossman School of Medicine. His research program works at the intersection of scientific research and public policy in order to generate the knowledge needed to improve health and quality of life.