In wake of the massive oil leak in the Gulf of Mexico, local concerns are being raised about increased oil tanker traffic through Burrard Inlet.

Vancouver Mayor Gregor Robertson has announced a special council meeting to address these issues on July 5.

“We need to make sure we’re doing everything we can to protect our coastline, our marine life and our economy,” Robertson said in a press release.

A number of experts will be on hand to address council on the issue, including members of B.C. Chamber of Shipping, Ministry of Environment and a local oceanographer.

Christianne Wilhelmson, of the Georgia Strait Alliance, is also aware of the concerns and said that the public should be more informed on the topic.

“What has happened the last 10 years is a dramatic increase in the transportation of crude oil and tar sands products out of the Vancouver ports,” Wilhelmson said. “With increased tanker traffic, with the frequency of trips, as well as the size (of the tankers), the risk of a catastrophic accident increases, and there has been no discussion on a community level.”

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