MP Cullen: Coastal Gaslink should consider rerouting pipeline

By Greg Fry
February 21, 2019 - 11:52am Updated: February 21, 2019 - 5:56pm

OTTAWA — Coastal Gaslink should consider rerouting its pipeline through northwest B.C.

Skeena-Bulkley Valley NDP MP Nathan Cullen made the comment today during a teleconference with regional reporters.

He said the idea should be considered in light of obvious"tensions" along the route.

Cullen admitted he's not sure what impact rerouting the pipeline might have.

"I don't know what the impact would be. I just think this should just be a consideration. That if we've known for a number of years that one of the main contention points was in this Unist'ot'en territory, the company did look at several different routes."

He noted every route has advantages and disadvantages but doesn't claim expertise on the matter.

"I don't build pipelines, I'm not going to claim expertise but I also know that the company has looked at, rejected and then reconsidered different options in the past. At this point, they're saying that this is their best route and their favoured one yet they haven't outright rejected any alternatives to the project in general. 

"They are in a position I think where they're trying to talk to the chiefs which has been a different conversation obviously."

Cullen says a new protocol agreement with the Wet'suwet'en chiefs, perhaps the first in Canadian history, could help the process along because it seeks to have hereditary chiefs be recognized and fundamentally involved in decision making that happens on the territory.

He says that could get the Province and chiefs to the "table" and talking to the company in a way that makes sense for everybody.

Coastal Gaslink's 670-kilometre pipeline aims to deliver natural gas from the Dawson Creek area to the proposed LNG facility near Kitimat.

The issue hit a roadblock last month when protests occurred along the proposed route near Houston. 


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