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Kinder Morgan to start work in Langley, Surrey, Coquitlam & Burnaby this September

The Vancouver-Burnaby chapter at the #BreakFree march to Kinder Morgan’s Westridge tanker terminal in Burnaby, May 2016.

Kinder Morgan Canada has filed its schedule with the National Energy Board for the construction of the 890,000 barrel per day Trans Mountain tar sands pipeline.

The Vancouver Sun reports:

– land clearing along the route (notably in Langley, Surrey, Coquitlam and Burnaby) is to start in the first week of September,

– pipe shipments begin in late September,

– pipeline construction near Edmonton is to start in mid-October,

– pipeline construction to start in January 2018,

– boring a tunnel through Burnaby Mountain is to start in late March 2018,

– stringing and welding of pipe in the Chilliwack area is to start in the summer of 2018,

– pipeline construction is to start in the Kamloops area in October 2018.

The news article highlights, “The first detailed look at how construction is to unfold brings into relief that while there continues to be legal and political fights to stop the project over concerns of an oil spill and increased oilsands emissions, the company is gearing up to start construction in less than three months.”

Another key upcoming date is June 22. That is when Liberal Premier Christy Clark will recall the British Columbia Legislature. It is expected she will lose a non-confidence shortly thereafter and that NDP leader John Horgan would become the premier by July 1 with the support of the Green Party.

Toronto Star columnist Tim Harper has identified the ways the new B.C. government could delay the construction of the pipeline:

– ordering a new provincial environmental assessment,

– delaying or withholding a number of provincial permits Kinder Morgan requires,

– demanding Kinder Morgan fulfill all 37 conditions appended to Clark’s certificate of approval,

– dropping the government’s defence in a ‘failure to consult’ legal challenge, likely resulting in the environmental certificate being thrown out.

The Vancouver Sun adds, “Another potential headache for Kinder Morgan is more than 400 statements of opposition, an unusually large number, that have been filed with the NEB on the detailed route. The NEB will determine which of those are valid – some certainly will be ruled invalid – and a panel will be set up this fall to hear arguments from the company and landowners and others who believe the pipeline route has a direct effect on them and should be changed.”

In the context of a changing situation, the Council of Canadians is assessing the best ways to help stop the pipeline in the courts, politically and on-the-ground.