Trans Mountain: backhand to the supreme Court for aboriginal communities

Trans Mountain: revers en Cour suprême pour des communautés autochtones

Of indigenous communities who oppose the expansion project of the oil pipeline of Trans Mountain were rejected on Thursday by the supreme Court of Canada.

The highest court in the land refused to hear the case of indigenous communities who had filed legal challenges against the expansion project of the pipeline of Trans Mountain (TMX).

The federal Court of appeal had ruled in September 2019 that these claims, made by members of the aboriginal communities of British Columbia, like that of Coldwater, of the Squamish Nation and of the Tseil-Waututh, could move forward, last year.

Then, it was then concluded in February that the new approval by the Trudeau government in June 2019, was reasonable, rejecting all the applications for judicial review.

On Thursday, the federal minister of natural Resources, Seamus O’regan, has welcomed the decision of the supreme Court of Canada arguing that Ottawa has approved TMX because it is an important project for our country”.

This expanded pipeline would route 890 000 barrels of oil per day from Alberta’s oil sands to the port of Burnaby, suburb of Vancouver, British Columbia.

According to the minister, the construction has started and has already created about 4900 good paying jobs”.

It has, however, clarified that the dialogue was continuing “with the aboriginal groups at each stage of the project in the months and years to come, always in a spirit of collaboration, to ensure we succeed in this process”.

Recall that the fed, which has purchased the infrastructure of Trans Mountain, was first given its approval to the project in 2016.

The federal Court of appeal has, however, ordered the suspension of work, in August 2018, considering that Ottawa did not consult adequately with the Aboriginal people and had not properly assessed some of the environmental risks.

After the second approval, 12 requests for an appeal have been filed, but the court has given its approval to six, which were refused in the supreme Court.

The other six, deposited, particularly by indigenous groups, who challenged the fact that the federal Court of appeal dismissed their applications for judicial review, have also been rejected by the supreme Court last march.

Remember also that British Columbia has suffered a setback in the supreme Court in its fight against the proposed expansion of the pipeline, Trans Mountain, last January. The province tried to argue that she had the right to limit the amount of heavy crude oil that it receives from Alberta.

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