A small crowd gathered in front of MP Jati Sidhu’s constituency office in Mission on Monday, June 4, 2018. (Kevin Mills/Black Press Media)

Day of Action: Hundreds show support at pipeline protests across B.C.

This was part of at least 100 protests scheduled throughout Canada on June 4

Dozens of protests were organized around the province today, as hundreds of people came together in solidarity against Canada’s decision last week to purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan.

Located mostly in the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island — with other demonstrations taking place in the Okanagan, Kootenays and the North — Monday’s ‘Day of Action’ was billed as a way to speak up against the pipeline sale by joining forces outside local MP offices or other visible locations throughout the province.

READ MORE: Canada to buy Trans Mountain pipeline from Kinder Morgan

Despite protests being organized for the first day of the week, many of the rallies that Black Press journalists covered were well attended. We spoke with a number of organizers and supporters and this is some of what they had to say:

“My original plan was to drive to Chilliwack but I thought why not do it here. There are people here who have a voice as well,” explained Terry Wilkinson, who helped host and coordinate an event in Mission.

“We as tax paying citizens do not agree with the recent decision of using taxpayers money to pay for Kinder Morgan, which we don’t agree with in the first place. So not only is it an environmental disaster waiting to happen, it’s now a financial disaster that has happened.”

Nearly 100 people turned out in South Surrey, where opposition to the decision was strong.

READ MORE/TAKE OUR POLL: Do you support the Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion?

“The importance of what we’re doing here is just huge,” local organizer Geoff Dean, a South Surrey resident, told the crowd. “The stupidity of the Trudeau government to think that they’re going to put $4.5 billion-plus into a pipeline. If they put that money into solar energy, we’d be way better off.”

Several members of the Council of Canadians in Williams Lake attended their local rally, including Keith Munroe who said the message of the federal government is inconsistent.

“You can’t demonstrate climate leadership and invest in increases in tar sands production, it just doesn’t make sense,” he said.

That sentiment was echoed by Vicky Dalton in Cranbrook.

“It’s a huge mistake, environmentally, socially; it’s incredibly irresponsible, frankly, for the government,” she said.

“Why are we supporting fossil fuels when we should be investing that money in renewable energy? And why are we, when we’ve just a few years ago signed on to the UN declaration of Aboriginal rights, why are we supporting something that many, many First Nations are extremely opposed to it, and have been mounting significant protests for years.”

READ MORE: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to visit B.C. this week

In Surrey, Rebecca Haber tightly held a small envelope for her local MP.

“There’s over 100,000 signatures on this petition. It’s on a USB stick, that’s why it looks so small,” Haber said, adding that it’s “unacceptable that the Liberal government is spending billions of our tax dollars on a fossil fuel project at a time when we need real action on climate change.”

Port Alberni organizer John Mayba would like to see comparative studies of the future needs of both coal and oil, and two or three different scenarios: what would happen if we continue using these resources as we are now; examine how much we would need to transition to sustainable energy solutions and for how long; and take an honest look at how going to war against climate change would cost if we ceased using such resources immediately.

About 150 people gathered in front of city hall in Nelson, among them was speaker Keith Wiley.

“This was a very upsetting week with the nationalization of the pipeline,” Wiley said after addressing the crowd.

“The fact that there is so little talk about the climate change aspects of the bitumen, about the big picture stuff, is extremely upsetting. It’s all talk about making the provinces ‘play nice’,and the politics of it. This completely avoids the elephant in the room which is our planet’s climate.”

Petitions signed by more than 265,000 people opposed to the pipeline purchase were to be delivered to the federal government on Monday.

Black Press Media web series

5/5 Trans Mountain pipeline: The Economics of oil



ragnar.haagen@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Dozens gathered in Nelson today, in protest of the federal government’s decision to buy the Trans Mountain pipeline (Bill Metcalfe/Black Press Media)

Just Posted

Anglers furious over VIP fishing trip

DFO, SkeenaWild both investigating legality of FN research licence to fishing party

Work begins to remove cargo from grounded Haida Gwaii barge and fishing lodge

Westcoast Resorts’ Hippa Lodge broke from its moorings and ran aground early this month

Visibility improvements coming for Prince Rupert’s downtown streets

Work on McBride Street and Second Avenue intersections, crosswalks, will take place this fall

Pipeline challenger says his feelings are irrelevant

The prospect of a federal review has Kitimat and Terrace businesses and residents worried

Prince Rupert receives Softball BC’s association of the year nomination

Association could receive $1,000 and a free coaching clinic as prizes

More than 125 runners take part in Northern View Cannery Road Race

Teen Terrace runners first to finish 5km and 10km, Prince Rupert runner wins 21km race

B.C. home to 1/3 of Canada’s overdose deaths in first 3 months of the year

There were 1,036 overdose deaths in the first three months of the year, with 94 per cent accidental

B.C. candidate moves from hospice care to council race

He beat terminal cancer twice and entered hospice when he decided to run for council.

Canadian tobacco exec pushes back against vaping health concerns

A warning from Interior Health about the unknown health risks of vaping is getting a partial rebuke

Ministry of Agriculture commits $300,000 to help B.C. farmers obtain land

B.C. Land Matching Program supports access to affordable farmland for young farmers

Canadian air force short 275 pilots

Attrition outpaces recruitment and training claims Air Force

Teacher suspended after physically shushing, saying ‘shut up’ to student

Grade 5 student reported feeling ‘confused and a little scared’

A B.C. society helps to reforest Crown land after wildfires

Forest Enhancement Society of BC focuses on wildfire mitigation and the reforestation

Most Read