NDP MP Rachel Blaney speaks during a meeting of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs on Friday. Screenshot from ParlVu

NDP MP Rachel Blaney speaks during a meeting of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs on Friday. Screenshot from ParlVu

Island MP calls for study on duty to consult First Nations about pipeline

Special meeting called after Federal Court of Appeals halts pipeline expansion

A federal committee has defeated an Island MP’s motion that called for a study on the government’s duty to consult First Nations over plans to expand the Trans Mountain Pipeline.

The motion, put forward by NDP MP Rachel Blaney, followed a decision by the Federal Court of Appeal last week that put the brakes on the controversial project, ruling that consultations with Indigenous communities about the pipeline were insufficient.

“What we have heard repeatedly from Indigenous communities is that there is no serious consideration of their concerns,” said Blaney during a televised meeting of the House of Commons Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs.

Citing the federal court’s decision, Blaney said that consultations with Indigenous communities consisted of “bureaucrats going out to listen to concerns and relay[ing] those concerns back to Cabinet.”

Blaney, who represents the North Island-Powell River riding, said that First Nations want direct engagement with decision-makers.

The motion put forward by Blaney called for the committee “to study the efficacy of the federal government’s fulfillment of the duty to consult Indigenous peoples with respect to the Trans-Mountain pipeline purchase and the Trans-Mountain expansion project.”

READ MORE: Trudeau says he won’t use ‘tricks’ to ram through pipeline construction

READ MORE: Pipeline buy-out sparks protest in Campbell River

Blaney, who serves as co-chair of the committee, was the only member to vote in favour of the motion.

A separate motion calling for a study on the consultations put forward by Conservative Party member Cathy McLeod was also defeated. McLeod and two other Tory members voted for that motion, along with Blaney, while Liberal Party members voted against it.

The committee convened in Ottawa ahead of the new Parliamentary session after Blaney and other committee members called for a special meeting in response to the federal court’s ruling.

Earlier in the week, NDP leader Jagmeet Singh called for the government to cancel the expansion of the pipeline, which the Liberal government purchased this year for $4.5 billion. Singh also called on the government to overhaul the process for reviewing energy projects and to create clean energy jobs.

The expansion project would triple the carrying capacity of the pipeline, which extends from the Edmonton area to Metro Vancouver. The project has encountered resistance from some First Nations, environmentalists and the B.C. government.

The Canadian government bought the pipeline from the Texas-based company Kinder Morgan after the company halted new investment in the project in April. Prime Minister Justin Trudeau pledged to see the project to completion, saying it’s in the national interest.

Just Posted

Cowichan Valley school district to get new electric-powered bus by the end of the school year. (File photo)
Cowichan Valley school district to get new electric-powered school bus

Bus one of 18 to be distributed across the province

Condemned building of the Twin Gables Motel in Crofton is not safe and yet a teen has been climbing around on the roof while others were ripping the siding off the building. (Submitted)
Destructive behaviour by teens wreaking havoc on Crofton

Residents becoming fed up with the constant vandalism and fires

This tractor was stolen from Providence Farm near Duncan between May 6 and 7, 2021. (Submitted)
Tractor stolen from Cowichan’s Providence Farm

John Deere X300 model was swiped between May 6 and 7

The organizers of the annual 39 days of July festival hope to return to live shows in Charles Hoey Park this year, like in this photo taken in 2019, but audiences at the show may be limited to 50 people due to health protocols. (File photo)
39 Days of July hoping for outdoor events in Duncan this summer

Annual music festival will run from June 25 to Aug. 2 this year

B.C. Labour Minister Harry Bains in the B.C. legislature, May 13, 2019. (Hansard TV)
VIDEO: B.C. to provide 3 days of sick pay for COVID-19 absences

Province will support employers on cost, labour minister says

A nurse asks screening questions at an immunization appointment in Nanaimo earlier this year. (Shawn Wagar/Island Health photo)
Island Health appreciates nurses answering the call in challenging times

Health authority draws attention to National Nursing Week

BC Housing minister David Eby. (THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito)
Eby jabs back against Penticton mayor’s ad urging BC Premier to intervene in shelter dispute

Eby writes that Penticton’s ‘serious’ social issues won’t improve under leadership of the mayor

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

Provincial health officer Dr. Bonnie Henry updates B.C.’s COVID-19 situation at the B.C. legislature, April 29, 2021. (B.C. government)
B.C.’s COVID-19 rate creeps up again, 600 new cases Wednesday

One more death, 423 people in hospital with virus

B.C. Agriculture Minister Lana Popham takes questions in the B.C. legislature in 2017. (Hansard TV)
UPDATE: B.C. will fund another year of fresh fruit, vegetables, milk in schools

John Horgan government working on school meal program

Surrey RCMP is releasing sketches of a suspect in an “indecent act” at the Coyote Creek Elementary playground on April 30, 2021. Police said the suspect was clean-shaven “during some interactions” and on “other occasions had stubble outlining a goatee and mustache.” (Images: Surrey RCMP handout)
Vancouver mayor-elect Kennedy Stewart addresses supporters in Vancouver on Sunday, Oct. 21, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
Vancouver mayor says there’s no time to redo details of drug decriminalization plan

Kennedy Stewart says a federal election could see the small window of opportunity close on the city’s bid for an exemption from criminal provisions on simple possession of small amounts of drugs

These are just a handful of Vancouver Island’s missing person cases. Clockwise from top left: Lisa Marie Young, Lindsey Nicholls, Micheal Dunahee, Jesokah Adkens, Belinda Cameron and Emma Fillipoff. (File photos courtesy of family members and police departments)
Could Victoria skull fragment bring closure to an Island missing persons mystery?

Skeletal remains found in Greater Victoria have not yet been identified

Most Read