Trans Mountain pipeline work stopped before it starts in British Columbia

Trans Mountain pipeline work stopped before it starts in British Columbia

Trans Mountain pipeline work stopped before it starts in British Columbia

"Our government made it clear that a sevenfold increase in heavy oil tankers in the Vancouver harbor is not in B.C.'s best interests", Heyman said at the news conference in Victoria. "We will use all available tools to protect our coastal waters and our province's future", the environment minister says.

The province's NDP government has hired former judge Thomas Berger to provide legal advice to the government as it seeks intervener status in legal challenges to the federal government's approval of the pipeline expansion.

"Until these consultations are completed in a way that meets these legal obligations, work on this project on public land can not proceed", he said.

Greenpeace campaigner Mike Hudema has issued a statement praising the government's action and declaring that it's "yet another indication that this pipeline will never be built".

The project would nearly triple the capacity of the current Trans Mountain pipeline to the west coast.

One of those tools is seeking intervenor status in the National Energy Board judicial review in federal court, where 21 parties are challenging the agency's "process and decision", said Eby, who described the Kinder Morgan file as "fast moving, legally speaking".

With its approval from the National Energy Board late a year ago and endorsement under the previous BC Liberal government, Kinder Morgan has been pushing ahead in meeting outstanding conditions and getting ready for construction. "Nor for our economy, our environment or thousands of existing jobs".

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

Not all First Nations in B.C. are opposed to the project.

Hudema added that if the B.C. government is serious about using every tool in its toolbox to fight the pipeline, it will "fully implement the UN Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples as part of its stated commitment to respect Indigenous rights, including the rigth to free, prior, and informed consent".

It didn't take long for Kinder Morgan Canada Limited to issue a response.

Rich Coleman, the leader of the opposition B.C. Liberals, also released a statement, saying the NDP's move "continues to drive home to investors that our province is not open for business or investment of any kind". "We have undertaken thorough, extensive and meaningful consultations with Aboriginal peoples, communities and individuals and remain dedicated to those efforts and relationships as we move forward with consultation activities in September". Many have signed benefits agreements with Kinder Morgan.

The pipeline expansion, as envisioned by Houston-based Kinder Morgan, would triple daily capacity to 890,000 barrels of crude oil on an existing 714-mile project that carries crude from the Alberta oil sands to British Columbia's Pacific coast.

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