Pipe for the Trans Mountain pipeline is unloaded in Edson, Alta. on Tuesday, June 18, 2019. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jason Franson

Canada’s bias meant improper consultations: First Nations challenging pipeline

Chief Leah George-Wilson says Canada had an opportunity to ‘get it right’ but failed

Six First Nations that have filed another legal challenge against the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion say Canada’s ownership of the corporation created a bias that prevented full consultations as ordered by the Federal Court of Appeal.

Chief Leah George-Wilson of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation says Canada had an opportunity to “get it right” but failed to take environmental risks into consideration as part of a rushed consultation process.

The court shelved the original approval last summer and the federal government approved the pipeline expansion again in June after a second round of consultations with First Nations.

George-Wilson says she expects the latest approval will be overturned based on the same mistakes the federal government made the first time around with its failure to conduct meaningful consultations.

READ MORE: Environmental groups challenge Trans Mountain, citing killer whale concerns

Lawyer Merle Alexander, who represents the Shxw’owhamel First Nation near Hope, says the nation that initially supported the pipeline chose to oppose it because an oil spill would destroy its sacred burial and archeological sites as well as the community’s sole source of water.

The federal government purchased the pipeline and expansion project for $4.5 billion, saying it was in the national interest to build the country’s energy infrastructure and to preserve jobs.

The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Silver Medal, Silver Division for U14C West Kootenay Rebels

B.C. championship held on the coast earlier this month

Anglican Church to review governance structure

Two bishops’ votes stood in the way of having same-sex marriage recognized by the church laws

Arts and heritage scene highlighted in Columbia Basin tour

Columbia Basin Culture Tour goes Aug. 10 and Aug. 11

No nuts were grown in Almond Gardens

Place Names: Grand Forks neighbourhoods, Part 2

Blooming judges coming to Trail

Trail is participating in the CiB Class of Champions next week

Rich the Vegan scoots across Canada for the animals

Rich Adams is riding his push scooter across Canada to bring awareness to the dog meat trade in Asia

A year later, ceremony commemorates victims of the Danforth shooting

It’s the one-year anniversary of when a man opened fire along the bustling street before shooting and killing himself

Japanese Canadians call on B.C. to go beyond mere apology for historic racism

The federal government apologized in 1988 for its racism against ‘enemy aliens’

B.C. VIEWS: NDP pushes ahead with Crown forest redistribution

This isn’t the time for a radical Indigenous rights agenda

Two dead in two-vehicle crash between Revelstoke and Golden

RCMP are investigating the cause of the crash

Ottawa fights planned class action against RCMP for bullying, intimidation

The current case is more general, applying to employees, including men, who worked for the RCMP

Alberta judge denies B.C.’s bid to block ‘Turn Off the Taps’ bill

He said the proper venue for the disagreement is Federal Court

Most Read