Monday, 23 October, 2017

BC's NDP government to join legal challenges against Trans Mountain pipeline

George Heyman and Attorney General David Eby NDP government won't permit Kinder Morgan to put shovels in ground on public land for pipeline
Juana Turner | 12 August, 2017, 00:22

Kinder Morgan released a statement in response, saying the company takes the announcement seriously and that it remains willing to meet with the new government to work through their concerns.

"He is a living example of modern First Nations law in Canada", said Eby.

"Until those plans are completed, Kinder Morgan, with the exception of private land. can not put shovels in the ground", the minister said.

The other challenge is by the Squamish First Nation, which has filed a lawsuit against the province in B.C. Supreme Court for issuing an environmental certificate for the pipeline expansion.

"Some of the tools that were available to BC previously were given away by the previous government when they agreed to accept the National Energy Board review as its own review". The province is the respondent in that case. The courts have been clear it is not part of the law of Canada, so if any government in Canada were to apply it instead of the test for consultation set out in the Haida case, I believe that would raise significant legal issues.

Notley made the comments at another pipeline site, the Enbridge Line 3 replacement project, which begins in Hardisty.

In a release, Interim Leader Rich Coleman says "Today's announcement by the NDP continues to drive the message home to investors that our province is not open for business or investment of any kind and is willing to forfeit an nearly $20 billion increase to our GDP".

"They need to have those work plans accepted..."

"Until it is completed, they are not able to begin work".

NDP government won't permit Kinder Morgan to put shovels in ground on public land for pipeline
Reaction to the Trans Mountain move by the BC NDP

Pipeline capacity would increase to 890,000 from 300,000 barrels of oil per day.

But given the fact that it would plough through a big chunk of the Burnaby Mountain Conservation Area, the plan has proven extremely controversial over recent years. "But even if the courts fail to stop this pipeline, the citizens of British Columbia are preparing to do what it takes".

"The pipeline will go ahead because it is in the best interest of the country as a whole", she said.

The project was approved by Prime Minister Justin Trudeau in November, and has been touted by Donald Trump.

During the recent election campaign, the BC NDP and the BC Greens opposed the pipeline expansion, and pledged to fight it if elected. The NDP also wants the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples (UNDRIP) to guide those consultations.

"We'll have more to announce in the future, but this is our first step today".

"We are committed to use every tool to defend BC's coast", said Mr Heyman during the press conference, where he was joined by the province's attorney general.

"We know with the federal government's approval of this project, the path forward will be challenging, but we're committed to stepping up and fighting for BC's interests".

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