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No Shell Plant in Sarnia

For the last few years there has been talk about Shell building another oil plant here in Sarnia, that would more than triple their oil production. People were speculating, some were certain. The house prices went up, which people think was because the plant was coming and Sarnia was getting ready for a big boom. Now it’s not happening. I can’t say I’m disappointed.

Shell abandons oil refinery plans for Sarnia area
Shell shelves plan for Ontario refinery

Here is some articles from the Sarnia Observer, shows Sarnia residents vary on their reactions.

Residents glad Shell pulled out
NOT ALL CONCERNS WERE FULLY ADDRESSED
BY JACK POIRIER, THE OBSERVER

Gayle Farr has no immediate plans to remove the “No Shell” sign planted in her St. Clair Parkway yard.

While local business and government leaders touted the economic windfall promised by a proposed Shell Canada refinery, some neighbours and First Nation residents questioned its environmental costs.

So they were relieved by news the project has been mothballed.

“This is one little step to protect what we have in the (St. Clair) river,” Farr said.

Her sign has stood in opposition to the proposed refinery for two years.

“It was presented as this miracle cure to cure all the economic woes (in Sarnia- Lambton).

“We have to diversify. We have to find another way to produce jobs. We can’t afford to do it with chemical plants and refineries,” she said.

Farr was co-organizer of a project information meeting scheduled for Thursday in Courtright.

“Maybe we’ll just get a big cake and celebrate,” she said. Aamjiwnaang’s Ron Plain,

a project manager with Environmental Defence, said the refinery wasn’t a good fit for the area.

“The reality is we would have had to deal with more emissions. I consider this a victory for Sarnia-Lambton,” he said.

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“The environmental and health impacts that we already suffer would have been compounded with the addition of a new plant.”

Walpole Island First Nation Chief Joseph Gilbert said his community objected to the site location because of existing impacts from neighbouring industry.

The Shell project would have increased emissions to the air and water from the 67 industrial plants already located upriver from Walpole, he said.

“We’ve never been against progress, but we expressed concern (about) what the impact would be on future generations.”

Shell had received unanimous support from municipal, provincial and federal government officials, with some stating they would do anything to move the project forward. Local business, labour and economic development officials cited the many positive economic impacts another refinery would bring.

“What good is that if your environment is destroyed?” Gilbert asked.

5 Comments

  • I guess if you have a job or government assistance than you don’t care or worry about industry coming to town…but for those struggling to survive, its a huge hit.

  • Agreed, the Sarnia economy will take a hit, however, the Sarnia economy isn’t the only thing that effects if i care or not. Environment, supporting oil companies, greed… etc etc all factor in to how I feel about it.

  • big loss for sarnia ontario all business sarnia economy

  • from big boom to no boom . sarnia is going to have big job loss. i think it dose not matter for people who have job. loss for all local business

  • Its people like them who are destroying this city’s economy!! I’m currently in school to become a process operator, and by the looks of things, i probably wont be holding a job here. This was a great opportunity for sarnia to grow and prosper and I don’t understand why you must boycott potential jobs for this area. Sarnia has had chemical industry since the 1800’s. Why stop now? What elts could help this city then a facility like that? It would create so many new jobs, plus it would have helped with emissions. Newer technology in this plant would reduce emmisions on the environment. I dont undestand you people, you obviously dont care for Sarnia’s future or for the future of students looking for jobs in this industry.

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