British Columbia to approach court to stall Kinder Morgan’s pipeline expansion
The British Columbia (BC) Government is set to undertake all possible measures to stall the proposed expansion of Kinder Morgan’s C$7.4bn ($5.8bn) Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project and increased tanker traffic until the company completes consultation with indigenous people.
In an attempt to protect the interests of the region, the provincial government has come out with elaborate plans, including both a legal recourse and consultation approach to thwart the project.
British Columbia Environment and Climate Change Strategy minister George Heyman said: “Our government made it clear that a seven-fold increase in heavy oil tankers in the Vancouver harbour is not in BC's best interests.
“Not for our economy, our environment, or thousands of existing jobs. We will use all available tools to protect our coastal waters and our province's future.”
In May this year, Kinder Morgan took a final investment decision for the expansion project.
Once the expansion is completed, the pipeline is expected provide western Canadian oil producers with an increasing pipeline capacity of around 590,000 barrels per day (bpd), while the total capacity will be raised to 890,000bpd of access to the western US and global markets.
British Columbia Attorney General David Eby said: “We are committed to fighting for BC’s interests and it is the government’s desire to seek intervener status in legal challenges to federal approval of the pipeline expansion and increased oil tanker traffic off BC's coast.”
Hearing in the case is expected to begin in federal court later this year.
The government noted that Kinder Morgan should complete the consultation process regarding potential impacts to aboriginal rights and title, as required in accordance with the environmental assessment certificate (EAC) requirements.