It will carry bitumen from the tar sands across Alberta and British Columbia, across First Nations territory, under pristine rivers, through woodlands and wilderness to Kitimat to be then shipped overseas in super tankers. As you can see Kitimat is an inland port and the super tankers will have to negotiate a narrow channel filled with islands to get to the open ocean.
Canadian government approves Enbridge's controversial Northern Gateway pipeline
The Harper government has approved construction of the proposed $7.9-billion Northern Gateway pipeline, setting up a battle in British Columbia with opponents who vow to use every means possible to block it.
Environmental groups vow to make the Gateway decision a major campaign issue in the 2015 election. The Conservatives have 21 seats in the province and need to hold onto many of them if Mr. Harper is to win a second majority mandate.
“While Enbridge has overcome another hurdle with this federal approval, they still face a wall of opposition in B.C.,” said Nikki Skuce, Senior Energy Campaigner. “First Nations, B.C. municipalities and the B.C. provincial government have all rejected Northern Gateway.”
“As far as we’re concerned, Northern Gateway is a dead project and we will treat it as such and do whatever we can to make sure that it never moves forward,” said Art Sterritt, executive director of Coastal First Nations, an umbrella group representing nine communities. “But there’s no way we’re going to approve a project that has the ability to wipe out our rights and title on the coast of B.C.”
(284 comments already)
Northern Gateway pipeline approved with 209 conditionsHere's what First Nations chief says
Video of the pompous fossil fool giving his statement
"We’ll see if Enbridge dares to put its shovels in the ground," Sterritt said in the release. "First Nations and our allies will protect our rights and the interests of future generations. We will never allow oil tankers into our territorial waters."It will be a long hard fight. 74% of BC is against the pipeline now and when they learn more about the destruction involved that number will grow. It means super tankers on the rocky coast of BC endangering the ecosystem. There's an election in 2015 and this unpopular decision will sink Harper's chances among many other scandals around him. He should have waited until after the election but his confidence overwhelmed him.
UPDATES at 10:00pm PDT
Andrew Weaver, Green Party MLA (Member of the Legislative Assembly, BC)
Federal decision on Northern Gateway an affront to democracy in BCReaction from DeSmog Canada
With its decision, the Federal Government is bulldozing this pipeline through the backyards of British Columbians. Time and time again, First Nations along the pipeline route have made it clear that they will not accept the Northern Gateway pipeline on their traditional territory. The District of Kitimat rejected the project in a recent referendum. And poll after poll has shown an overwhelming majority of British Columbians do not believe the project should move forward.
We owe our First Nations a debt of gratitude as they commence legal action to have their constitutional rights enforced. First Nations are using their resources — resources that could be used towards the betterment of their communities — to defend the interests of all British Columbians in court. This shouldn’t need to be the case. It is the BC Government that should be stepping up to defend the rights of all British Columbians. The spotlight is now on Premier Clark.
Freaking Out About the Northern Gateway Decision? Take a Deep Breath[Those opposed to the #NorthernGateway in the latest poll is 74%, ¾ of British Columbians.]
Today pundits will write thousands of words about the political consequences of Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s decision. I'll try not to add to the noise.
But I will listen to the voices of First Nations who have rejected the pipeline and tankers on their lands and waters. And I will think of the two-thirds of British Columbians who want this project rejected or delayed. And I will be calm in knowing that thousands of groups and individuals are committed to preserving that long stillness and silence of the Great Bear Rainforest. And within that silence, the sound of opposition is deafening.
Northern Gateway Approved, But Far From Built
First Nations Reignite Opposition Across B.C.
First Nations are nearly unanimously opposed to the construction of the pipeline, however, and it is unclear how either Enbridge or the Harper government might address those concerns, steeped as they are within a constitutionally enshrined aboriginal rights framework.
In total, 130 First Nations have publicly rejected the project.
According to the Gitga’at Nation, the panel failed to legitimately consult First Nations during the review process, meaning the entire process did not meet the federal government’s legal duty to meaningfully consult aboriginal groups. How that conundrum can be remedied after the fact is anyone’s guess.
Upon announcement of the federal approval of the pipeline, a large group of First Nations, Councils, and Assemblies launched a legal suit against the Government of Canada, saying “we will defend our territories whatever the costs may be.”
“This project, and the federal process to approve it, violated our right and our laws,” the groups stated in a press release. “We are uniting to defend our lands and waters of our respective territories. Our rights and laws compel us.” The groups include Gitxsan, Haisla, Heiltsuk, Tsleil-Waututh Nation, Wet'suwet'en First Nation, the B.C. Assembly of First Nations and Coastal First Nations among many others.
Polarized Pipeline Debate is Preventing Real Dialogue on Oilsands[I don't agree entirely with award-winning environmental campaigner and author Tzeporah Berman. Words are important, so firstly bitumen is extracted from the TAR SANDS in Alberta, "oilsands" is an industry word. First Nations used it to patch up their canoes, it is heavy black tar. The debate in British Columbia is not exactly polarized since the great majority of the people ⅔ - ¾ depending on the poll oppose the Northern Gateway pipeline. I like this:]
Imagine if energy companies decided to lead the transition to renewables and critics acknowledged that we can’t shut down the oilsands overnight and got serious about a conversation that looked at how much oil we will need and for how long?
Imagine if we had a government who actually assessed all the economic opportunities for Canada and created programs to support the development of the high tech, clean energy, manufacturing, film or tourism industries as aggressively as they have been pushing pipelines as nation building?More radical, more far reaching, more of a dream, imagine a world without OIL, imagine leaving it in the ground. I did that for one day and it was exhilarating.