It’s been a week since the tornado ripped apart the Greater Toronto Area.
There are billions of dollars of damage from the twister to the north of Highway 401 and at least a billion dollar cleanup operation due to the transformer station fire alone.
Speculation that Enbridge’s Line 9 carrying DilBit from the Alberta Tar Sands is still leaking after the rupture last week at the Richview Transformer Station has caused massive public demonstrations at Queen’s Park and Parliament Hill calling for the end of the Tar Sands and the shipping of DilBit across the country.
Environmental groups world-wide are slamming the Canadian government for keeping the initial findings of the Richivew investigation quiet.
Residents of Toronto are demanding full disclosure and are calling for Enbridge to be held accountable for the entire cleanup effort along Mimico Creek.
There is enormous pressure on the city council to legally shut down Line 9 across the GTA. Enbridge is threatening bankruptcy in response.
This last catastrophe is the third spill in as many months.
Two months ago, the Great Lakes region suffered a minor earthquake. A few days later, DilBit oozed from the Erin Mills Athletic Fields west of the airport during a city soccer league championship. Children were complaining of nausea and dizziness during the games which raised concerns that perhaps a flu was making its rounds through the little league.
The virus theory proved to be false as parents discovered tacky black mud on the spikes of their kids soccer shoes. Soon the grounds were closed and the surrounding neighbourhoods evacuated.
The cleanup is still under way.
Then last month, a parent in a Winston Churchill development next to highway 403 filed a lawsuit against Enbridge after her child fell into a black tar-like puddle in her yard backing onto the fenced-off hydro corridor. The incident was quietly settled out of court within a week, but after 5 days of heart-wrenching suffering along with her child’s severe asthma, liver, and kidney damage, the story was leaked to the Toronto Sun.
Enbridge denies all claims and the original plaintiff understandably refuses to comment. The child’s physician Dr. Crawfoot, however, conducted her own private investigation and discussed her patient’s case with the Globe And Mail. Her license to practise has since been revoked for breach of patient confidentiality and Enbridge is threatening a liable suit against her.
Dr. Crawfoot is now heading an international DilBit Free movement.
The third and current spill is looking very incriminating as far as the integrity of Line 9 is concerned. Speculation that the pipeline was already compromised and leaking at the time the fire started at the Richview Transformer Station is circulating amongst the scientific community. Unfortunately, the only people who would be able to provide any proof were incinerated in the first blast.
There are also rumours that Tim Harrison, one the Hydro One employees who perished, was uploading something onto the iCloud around the same time the explosion took place. Tim’s girlfriend Shannon was reportedly found wandering the hacker community trying to figure out how to break into her late boyfriend’s account.
It appears that she may have been successful. The account and all its content no longer exist and Shannon has disappeared.
“Indeed she has,” whispers a woman’s voice as the sound of waves crashing against rocks echoes against the mountain cliffs.
The laptop mouse pointer moves over to an e-mail addressed to Dr. Crawford with the subject line “Coffee And The DilBit”. The message contains a link to a movie file and nothing else.
A tanned hand presses the return key and the airplane whoosh signals that the message is sent.
Shannon steps onto the balcony of her secret hideout and stares out over the ocean. Tim’s last words reverberate in her mind. “What’s that?” “What’s that?” “What’s that?”…
A haze forms over the ocean. The sound of a spark cuts through the sirens and continuous screams of panic playing in her head as the water bursts into a flaming storm.