In a shocking turn of events, the Federal Government now finds themselves the owners of a legally stalled 7.4 billion dollar pipeline project.
A Federal Court of Appeal decision released this morning found fault with both the National Energy Board’s assessment of the project, and with their inadequate consultation with First Nations.
The Court’s decision throws the project in to legal limbo, forcing the government to redo Phase 3 consultation.
Following the court decision, Kinder Morgan shareholders gathered in Calgary, where they overwhelmingly approved the 4.5 billion dollar sale of the now-legally stalled pipeline to the federal government, dealing them a second blow this morning.
The government can now either take the matter before the Supreme Court, or restart consultation efforts on the project, either of which could take years to complete.
This morning’s Court ruling overturning construction approval for the Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion, represents a huge win in the eyes of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs.
In a statement this morning, the Union called the decision part of “a long line of recent Canadian court decisions that carve out a new legal space around Indigenous Title and Rights.”
The Federal Court of Appeal ruling found the NEB did not engage in two way consultating with First Nations, instead recording and listening to complaints and forwarding them to the approval board.
Union Vice-President Chief Bob Chamberlain says the decision will help protect critically threatened wildlife from additional environmental trauma related to another fossil fuel pipeline expansion.
Premier John Horgan on how the decision effects his court reference
Premier John Horgan will not rescind his reference case establishing coastal control following today’s Federal Court of Appeal decision.
Horgan says that, while he is happy with the decision, establishing jurisdiction over BC’s coastline is still important.
Horgan went on to say that, while he will continue the challenge, today’s decision does allow the government to shift their focus to other areas.
Later Horgan mentioned that efforts to create more affordable housing and long-term jobs will now be able to take centre stage.