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B.C.'s impending Kinder Morgan challenge is another straw on a very beleaguered camel

B.C.'s impending Kinder Morgan challenge is another straw on a very beleaguered camel
From CBC - August 11, 2017

On Thursday, the provincial NDP government made an announcement about a natural resource project in British Columbia.

The announcement did not guarantee the project would proceed or fail but it was another step in the saga that is now several years in the making, pitting environmentalists and many Indigenous communities against proponents of the project, who promise it will deliver jobs and energy security for the province.

A final decision is expected at a later date.

Yes, you could be forgiven for having energy exhaustion: between the Site C hydroelectric dam, theEnbridge Northern Gateway pipeline, any number of LNG pipelines and plants, and theKinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline, there are plenty of megaprojects dominating the discourse in British Columbia, with no end in sight.

Butthe B.C. government announcing they werelawyering up for a legal challenge of the Trans Mountain pipeline project is significant, creating close to total agreement in B.C. among provincial, municipal, and Indigenous governments and in complete contrast with the federal Liberals and Alberta'sNDP.

And yet, it was hard to find as much jubilation or anger in people's responses on Thursday. Possibly because it seemed everyone expected a new government would take a new strategy.

"I think it's them delivering on what they said they would do," said Stewart Muir,executive director of Resource Works, an organization oriented towardcommunicating the economic benefits of resourse extraction.

"They are delivering on an election promise. They said they would be looking at this, they have refined their action plan ... and in proper sequence, we are seeing them come forward with specific actions."

B.C. ca not veto

The previous B.C. Liberal government allowed Ottawa to make the final approval for the$7.4billion pipeline, which will nearly triple the amount of oil products moved along the 1,150-kmroute from Edmonton to Burnaby.

That means the NDP, for all its rhetoric, ca not legally block the projectif the courts ultimately rule that consultation has been adequate.

But by placing more regulatory and legal straws on the camel that is the Trans Mountain pipeline, they could eventually break the will of Kinder Morgan to see the project through.

I think every First Nations acts individually, and absolutely has a right to protect their territory. - Solomon Reece, CEO ofFour Eagles Development Group

"The Trans Mountain Expansion Project has undergone an unprecedented level of scrutiny and review," the company said in a statement not the first time they have shown some exhaustion with the process.

In a regulatory filing madebefore they launched an IPO to raise $1.75 billion for the pipeline, they outlined several "risk factors" that could doom the entire project.

@TransMtn

Unique Indigenous rights in B.C.

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