An estimated crowd of about 5,000 began marching in Vancouver November 19, 2016 in protest of the proposed Kinder Morgan pipeline.
The No Consent, No Pipeline rally began around 12:30pm and marched over the Cambie Street Bridge.
Some of the guest speakers at the rally consisted of Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs, Squamish First Nation chief Ian Campbell, Musqueam activist Audrey Siegl, Tsleil-Waututh activist Cedar Parker, Secwepemc activist Jody Leon, and Indigenous Environmental Network rep Melina Laboucan-Massimo.
On 19 May 2016, the National Energy Board (NEB) issued a report recommending that Governor in Council (GIC) approve the Trans Mountain Expansion Project (Project), subject to 157 conditions. Should GIC approve the Project, it will order the NEB to issue a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity. You can read the full Recommendation Report here.
Mayor of Vancouver Gregor Robertson is quoted as saying “I think you will see protests on this one like you have never seen before,” Robertson said in an interview on The House with Chris Hall. “I think it is perilous politically.” The Vancouver Mayor released a video November 15th, 2016 in which he is asking for British Columbians to support a petition to “send a clear message to Ottawa” that the proposed pipeline, “is absolutely not worth the risk to our environment, or economy.” and is urging people to share his message and the petition.
As of November 21, 2016 the petition has 8,444 signatures so far.
In the wake of disaster such as the sinking of a diesel tug boat and barge off Bella Bella, that spilled 59,000 gallons of the harmful fuel into the ocean, and an inadequite response plan in place for such disasters, its not hard to imagine what 7 times the oil tanker traffic in Vancouver could result in emptying into the Pacific Coastal waters.
Marc Garneau Minister of Transportation stated “We are certainly recognizing the fact that we need to do better on marine security,” Garneau, who is poised to announce a “coastal strategy” that includes greater focus on spill prevention and
clean-up, told the House of Commons. “We are looking at the issue of compensation.”
During the 2015 election the Liberals platform included a vow to bring in an oil tanker ban on the B.C’s north coast, a promise to which has yet to have been kept.
With such rehtoric in the House of Commons over creating a response by Fisheries and Oceans to potential spills, one wonders if the Liberals have any intention of fulfilling their oil tanker ban. Guarenteeing a response plan is one thing, preventing future spills by banning tanker traffic in the north, and preventing new piplelines from creating additional traffic in the south is quite another.
This December 19, 2016 will be the deciding factor in whether or not the Liberals will continue the rise of fossil fuel emitions in Canada as the previous Conservative government had or not, and could be a hot topic issue in the next federal election.
In the mean time we can expect to see more rallys and marchs, demonstraitions, and protests over the $6.8 Billion dollar proposed pipeline, and perhaps Standing Rock type protests, as the hastag #StopKM continues to trend on social media and people call on Justin Trudeau’s Liberal government to reject the expansion project .