1 December 2016 | West Coast Environmental Law

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December 2016

Caring for the Salish Sea

19 December, 2016

At West Coast we’re buckling down to protect the Salish Sea, the global atmosphere, and future generations – a journey that will take us through 2017 and likely well beyond.  My colleague Eugene Kung has described the new phase of efforts to stop the Kinder Morgan expansion. At the same time, we are also looking at opportunities to achieve better coastal management, generally. Even without Kinder Morgan there are gaps to fill.

Environmental oversight is needed to preserve the coastline of the Salish Sea from industrial, shipping and other human impacts. Photo: Deborah Carlson.

Are politicians really standing up for our climate with the Pan-Canadian Framework?

16 December, 2016

The new Pan-Canadian Framework on Clean Growth and Climate Change – and the games played by BC’s Premier Christy Clark during the process leading up to it – demonstrate clearly that Canada needs scientists, and not politicians, to be front and centre in developing its climate policy.


Canada's Prime Minister and Premiers during a press conference on the Climate Framework following the First Ministers' Meeting on December 9, 2016.

Carrying forward lessons from Northern Gateway

8 December, 2016

Understandably, those opposed to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain project have not been in a mood to celebrate this past week. At the same time as the Prime Minister announced the federal government’s approval of Kinder Morgan (and the Enbridge Line 3 project), he confirmed something that most people already knew to be true: the Enbridge Northern Gateway project is dead. In addition to rejecting Northern Gateway, last week the federal government also provided preliminary details on oil tanker ban legislation that it will introduce in spring 2017.

The fact that First Nations, communities and individual citizens who opposed Northern Gateway were successful in stopping the project, even in the face of a previous federal approval and a determined pipeline company with deep pockets, deserves a moment of reflection.

Staff Counsel Gavin Smith with Geraldine Thomas-Flurer of the Yinka Dene Alliance during Northern Gateway court hearings in October 2015

How my view of the world changed over the course of a fight against a megaproject

Field notes: A week of pipeline action and cross-Canada solidarity

6 December, 2016

Staff Counsel Eugene Kung recounts an action-packed week preparing for – and responding to – the federal government's approval of the Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline and tankers proposal.

This is your friend Eugene, blogging from 9,753 metres in the sky.

I’m writing on my way home after a full and intense week. According to the map, we are above Treaty 1 territory, somewhere between Winnipeg and Brandon, MB. A Tribe Called Red’s incredible new album, We Are the Halluci Nation, is blasting in my ear.

Trudeau's pipeline approvals fail to recognize the "magnitude" of the climate problem

1 December, 2016

The thing that frustrated me most when watching the Prime Minister’s press conference earlier this week approving the Kinder Morgan and Line 3 pipelines is that he – or at least his government – knows that these pipelines undermine Canada’s climate goals and move us away from a sustainable future. 

That’s pretty clear from the government’s “mid-century long term strategy” on climate change, released on the last day of the Marrakech climate negotiations (Friday, November 18th).

The thing that frustrated me most when watching the Prime Minister’s press conference earlier this week approving the Kinder Morgan and Line 3 pipelines is that he – or at least his government – knows that these pipelines undermine Canada’s climate goals and move us away from a sustainable future.