Federal Court Dismisses First Nation's Trans Mountain Pipeline Challenge

Canada's Federal Court of Appeal has rejected a challenge issued by the Tsleil-Waututh Nation that claims the National Energy Board unlawfully reviewed Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion by not properly consulting with the First Nation.

The challenge filed in April of 2014 stated that the board violated the First Nation's aboriginal rights by breaching its duty to consult them about the pipeline.

The board’s panel responded to the challenge by stating that the First Nation had declined several opportunities for consultation before the pipeline review and also dismissed the opportunity to voice its opposition through written evidence or participating in oral submissions.

The panel added that the consultation process for the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion is still in process as the federal government has selected a special panel to hear the concerns of First Nations and other communities regarding the pipeline route.

The federal cabinet will decide if the panel did not properly consult the Frist Nation before it makes a decision on the expansion project at the end of this year.

The Sacred Trust Initiative, a group created by the First Nation to protest Trans Mountain, says it will file another court challenge if Canadian Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s administration approves the pipeline.

Huffington Post B.C. Canada