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Aboriginal Law

Northern Gateway Asks to Extend the Expiring Federal Approval for its Oil Pipeline and Tanker Project: A Backgrounder for Engaging in the Public Comment Period

Subject(s): 
Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline Extension Request
Author(s): 
Gavin Smith, Georgia Lloyd-Smith
Summary: 

The federal approval of Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers proposal is on track to expire at the end of 2016. To keep its project alive, Northern Gateway has requested a 3-year extension. First Nations, municipalities, organizations and citizens have until June 27, 2016 to comment on Northern Gateway’s extension request and influence the fate of this controversial pipeline and tanker project.

This backgrounder provides helpful information about Northern Gateway's extension request and explains how groups and individuals can engage in the public comment period.

Publication Date: 
May 2016
Year: 
2016
Pages: 
3
Date Catalogued: 
Tuesday, May 31, 2016

Open letter to Prime Minister Trudeau re: Kinder Morgan / Energy East NEB

Subject(s): 
NEB review process
Author(s): 
open letter
Summary: 

An open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and Catherine McKenna, Minister of Environment and Climate Change regarding the NEB process.

Publication Date: 
November 2015
Year: 
2015
Pages: 
4
Date Catalogued: 
Friday, November 13, 2015

Open letter to Prime Minister Trudeau re: Commitment to introduce legislated ban on oil tanker traffic on British Columbia’s north coast

Subject(s): 
North coast tanker ban
Author(s): 
open letter
Summary: 

An open letter to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau signed by

BC-Yukon KAIROS
BC Nature
Dogwood Initiative
Douglas Channel Watch
Eye of the Storm
ForestEthics Advocacy
Fort St. James Sustainability Group
Friends of Morice Bulkley
Friends of Wild Salmon
Greenpeace Canada
Haida Gwaii CoASt
Living Oceans Society
My Sea to Sky
North West Watch
Pacific Wild
Prince George Public Interest Research Group
Prince Rupert Environment Society
RAVEN
Sea to Sands Conservation Alliance
Sierra Club BC
Skeena Watershed Conservation Coalition
T. Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation
The Steelhead Society of British Columbia, Northern Branch
UFAWU - Unifor United Fishermen and Allied Workers' Union
United Church of Canada
Watershed Watch Salmon Society
West Coast Environmental Law Association
Wilderness Tourism Association of BC
Publication Date: 
November 2015
Year: 
2015
Pages: 
1
Date Catalogued: 
Friday, November 13, 2015

Legal Backgrounder – What are the Northern Gateway Court Challenges About?

Subject(s): 
Summary Of The applicants’ written arguments in the legal challenges to the Enbridge Northern Gateway approval
Author(s): 
Gavin Smith, Justine Desmond
Summary: 
The eighteen legal challenges to the federal government’s approval of Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers project are scheduled to be heard together in Vancouver this October, setting the stage for a historic legal battle to protect the environment and Aboriginal rights. West Coast Environmental Law staff counsel Gavin Smith and student volunteer Justine Desmond explain the main arguments at play in this storm of court challenges.
 
In June 2014, the federal Cabinet issued an order approving Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers project. Eight First Nations, four environmental organizations and one labour union have launched legal challenges to the federal government’s approval of the Project. They are: Gitga’at First Nation; Gitxaala Nation; Haida Nation; Haisla Nation; Heiltsuk Nation; Kitasoo Xai’Xais Nation; Nadleh Whut’en; Nak’azdli Whut’en; BC Nature; ForestEthics Advocacy Association; Living Oceans Society; Raincoast Conservation Foundation; and Unifor. The legal challenges will be heard at the same time in a hearing before the Federal Court of Appeal in Vancouver, scheduled to take place over six days on October 1-2 and 5-8, 2015.
 
This backgrounder provides a high-level summary of the written arguments of the Applicants that are challenging the federal government’s approval of Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers project in the Federal Court of Appeal.
 
The written arguments of the Applicants can be accessed in full here:
 
Publication Date: 
July 2015
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Year: 
2015

Andrew Thompson Award 2014 Brochure

Subject(s): 
Andrew Thompson Award 2014 Brochure
Author(s): 
West Coast Environmental Law
Summary: 
The Andrew Thompson award was established in 2002 by West Coast Environmental Law and the Thompson family as a legacy to Dr. Andrew Thompson, and was made possible through the generosity of the Thompson family. The award is given to an individual who has demonstrated a significant lifetime contribution to environmental protection and sustainability in British Columbia through the law.
 
Dr. Andrew Thompson was one of the pioneers in environmental and resource law and one of BC’s foremost environmental lawyers. In acknowledgement that Dr. Thompson’s work bridged the fields of environmental and Aboriginal law and of his contributions to advancing justice for First Nations, the 2014 award recognized individuals who have made an exceptional contribution to the fields of environmental and Aboriginal law or to the revitalization, recognition and/or enforcement of Indigenous environmental law.
 
This publication highlights the 2014 award finalists.
Publication Date: 
November 2014
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law Association
Year: 
2014
Pages: 
2

Legal Backgrounder: First Nations Legal Challenges to Enbridge Pipelines and Tankers Project

Subject(s): 
First Nations, tar sands, Enbridge, pipelines and tankers, energy
Author(s): 
Clogg, Jessica
Summary: 

In a wave of legal filings between July 11 and July 14, 2014 eight First Nations from Haida Gwaii to Yinka Dene territory west of Prince George have set in motion legal proceedings that, combined with 9 court cases filed earlier this year, have the potential to stop or significantly delay the Enbridge Northern Gateway pipelines and tankers project (the “Enbridge Project”). This publication provides details on the legal cases, and several events leading up to the legal cases.

 

Publication Date: 
July 2014
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Year: 
2014
Pages: 
2
Date Catalogued: 
Monday, July 14, 2014

Legal Backgrounder Coastal First Nations Declaration and Save the Fraser Declaration

Subject(s): 
Coastal First Nations Declaration, Save the Fraser Declaration
Author(s): 
Clogg, Jessica, Paterson, Josh
Summary: 

In 2010, two unequivocal Indigenous-law based declarations were signed by First Nations, definitively banning tar sands crude oil tankers, pipelines and infrastructure from their territories. Nine First Nations peoples of the Central and North Pacific Coast and Haida Gwaii (the “Coastal First Nations”) signed the Coastal First Nations Declaration (March 2010), and sixty-one First Nations centred in the Fraser Watershed signed the Save the Fraser Declaration (December 2010). Signatories of the Save the Fraser Declaration have since grown to over 100.

These Declarations were prompted by a tar sands megaproject proposed by Enbridge Inc.. The proposed 1,172 kilometre-long Enbridge Northern Gateway tankers and pipelines project would stretch from the Alberta tar sands through the headwaters of the Mackenzie, Fraser and Skeena rivers to a marine terminal at Kitimat and would result in an estimated 225 crude oil and condensate tankers a year travelling through the territories of Coastal First Nations. The majority of Enbridge’s proposed pipeline route is through the territories of First Nations that have banned the pipeline using their own laws. Opposed First Nations now form an unbroken wall from the U.S. border to the Arctic Ocean. The following commentary examines the legal significance of the Coastal First Nations Declaration and the Save the Fraser Declaration.

Publication Date: 
December 2012
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Year: 
2012
Pages: 
8
City: 
Vancouver
Date Catalogued: 
Tuesday, December 18, 2012

Environmental Assessment Law for a Healthy, Secure and Sustainable Canada: A Checklist for Strong Environmental Laws

Subject(s): 
Environmental Assessment, Public Participation
Author(s): 
Rachel S. Forbes, Josh Paterson, Jamie Kneen, Stephen Hazell, John Sinclair
Summary: 

Canadians want strong environmental laws, and they deserve an environmental assessment process that delivers on core Canadian values related to the environment, democracy, and responsible development.

This paper outlines a blueprint of what strong environmental assessment legislation must include, at a minimum, to protect those values and ensure wise decisions are made about proposed development through an effective, efficient, inclusive and robust decision making process.

The authors offer ten principles as a non-exhaustive checklist against which legislative proposals on this issue may be evaluated.

 

West Coast Environmental Law is grateful for the generous support of the Law Foundation of British Columbia.
The views expressed in this paper are those of the authors.

Publication Date: 
February 2012
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental law
Year: 
2012
Pages: 
13
City: 
Vancouver and Ottawa
Date Catalogued: 
Monday, February 20, 2012

Map of BC First Nations declaring Indigenous Law bans on Enbridge and Kinder Morgan tankers and pipelines

Subject(s): 
Enbridge, Kinder Morgan, Tankers, Pipeline, BC First Nations, Map, Indigenous Law
Author(s): 
West Coast Environmental Law
Summary: 

This is a map of combined traditional territories of First Nations who have banned tar sands pipelines and tankers using their indigenous laws.

Publication Date: 
February 2012
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Year: 
2012
Pages: 
1
City: 
Vancouver
Date Catalogued: 
Wednesday, February 8, 2012

Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline risks for downstream communities and fisheries

Subject(s): 
Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline, risks, fisheries, pipeline, condensate, Fraser River, Skeena River, Kitimat, First Nations
Author(s): 
West Coast Environmental Law
Summary: 

The Enbridge Northern Gateway Pipeline proposal includes two 1,170 kilometre long pipelines from the tar sands in Alberta to the coast at Kitimat. The pipelines will carry an average of 525,000 barrels per day of crude oil to the ocean, and 193,000 barrels a day of condensate, a toxic kerosene-like natural gas by-product used to dilute crude oil so that it can be transported by pipeline, to Alberta.

The pipelines will cross over 1,000 streams and rivers, including the headwaters of the Fraser River (crossing the Stuart, Endako and Salmon Rivers) and the headwaters of the Skeena River (crossing the Morice and Bulkley watersheds). Each of these stream crossings will require two pipeline crossings, as the project consists of twinned pipelines. The project has the potential to seriously affect First Nations downstream of these crossings. The toxic effects of a spill could be felt for hundreds of kilometres, stretching down the entire length of the Fraser River to the sea.

Publication Date: 
February 2012
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Year: 
2012
Pages: 
4
City: 
Vancouver
Date Catalogued: 
Wednesday, February 8, 2012
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