The declaration, entitled “All together against Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain Expansion pipeline and for a just transition”, has been signed by 120 personalities and organizations in solidarity with the First Nations and communities who oppose the Kinder Morgan project along with the government of British Columbia. The signatories of the declaration also called for an emergency mobilization on May 27th at 1:30 PM at the Place des Festivals in Montreal in order to demand that Justin Trudeau reject the Kinder Morgan project, refuse to finance it and respect the right of First Nations and of British Columbia to reject this dangerous project. Organizations can continue to sign on to the declaration until May 27th.
The declaration recalls that “as a signatory of the Paris Agreement, Canada must engage quickly in a just and profound transition that will significantly reduce our dependence on oil, our greenhouse gas emissions (GHG), and will create a greener economy complete with greener jobs. This transition requires resources, planning and leadership that must come from all levels of government.”
The Trans Mountain Expansion Kinder Morgan tar sands pipeline project is more at risk than ever with the company halting certain work on the project in April. The opposition by First Nations and the general public, numerous legal battles, the economic precariousness of the project, and the legitimate actions taken by the government of British Columbia to protect the environment have together created too much uncertainty for the company. It therefore set a deadline of May 31st, by which time the situation needs to be resolved.
As for Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, he has come to the defence of the Texas company and announced that his government will take the financial and legislative means necessary to ensure that the project is built, despite the political quagmire in which it finds itself.
The signatories of the declaration also recall that “M. Trudeau also promised to implement the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which provides that the free, prior and informed consent of First Nations must be obtained for projects on their territory. Many First Nations in British Columbia are staunchly opposed to the Trans Mountain project. In fact, 150 First Nations in Quebec, Canada and the United States have signed the Treaty Alliance in opposition to any expansion of the tar sands and in favour of a just energy transition.”
Quotes from signatories of the declaration:
Dominic Champagne: “At a time when scientific studies urge that 80% of known oil reserves remain in the ground, at a time when the energy transition requires that we invest in getting off fossil fuels, it is immoral that Canada, a signatory of the Paris Agreement, continue to subsidize the deadly oil industry. ”
Grand Chief Serge ‘Otsi’ Simon of the Mohawk Council of Kanesatake on behalf of 150 First Nations in Canada and the United States who signed the Treaty Alliance Against Tar Sands Expansion: “As Kinder Morgan and the Trudeau government make their calculations ahead of the company’s May 31 deadline, they should know that First Nations from east to west will be standing by the BC First Nations who refuse to consent to the project. The movement out east that stopped the Energy East tar sands pipeline is not going to let all that same dirty oil escape to the west.”
Véronique Côté: “Let’s be united, let’s be visionaries, and make our world more habitable. Climate justice is the main challenge of this century – everyone can and should stand up for our right to live together on a hospitable planet. Choose a side: choose the life, and let’s leave the fossils where they are.”
Éric Pineault: “By proposing to financially support and ram through the Trans Mountain project, the Trudeau government is assisting this Texan company in constructing a pipeline that will contribute to doubling tar sands production. Such growth locks us long term into an economy that depends on dirty oil and prevents us from meeting the climate commitments we made in Paris. You cannot both have an economy that aims to reduce greenhouse gas emissions all the while expanding production of tar sands oil. The Trudeau government, if it is serious in its desire to meet our greenhouse gas reduction targets, should make every effort to support governments, communities and First Nations as well as businesses that can contribute to the ecological transition, not those that are its main obstacle.”
Anne-Céline Guyon: “All of the people here today have fought or supported the fight against the Energy East pipeline project. It is therefore only natural to meet again, to be here, together, in solidarity with our sisters and brothers from the West to say no to Kinder Morgan and no to tar sands expansion. But we are also here to demand from the Trudeau government a real energy transition policy, respectful of First Nations, of communities and of workers.”
Patrick Bonin, Greenpeace Canada: “The Trudeau government is reneging on the Paris Agreement and is losing all credibility in its commitment to reconciliation with First Nations when it proposes to fund and force the passage of this pipeline when it does not have the consent of First Nations and the government of British Columbia is opposed. After having rejected TransCanada’s Energy East project, the population of Quebec will not sit idly by while Justin Trudeau seeks to impose a pipeline upon a province, communities and First Nations who do not want it.”
The declaration is here and organizations can continue to sign on to the declaration until May 27th.
For more information or to contact other signatories contact:
Loujain Kurdi, Greenpeace Canada communications advisor, firstname.lastname@example.org, 514.577.6657
You can also reach other spokespersons including:
Grand Chief Serge ‘Otsi’ Simon, Mohawk Council of Kanesatake: (514) 269-9152
Notes to Editors:
Information on the emergency rally on May 27th can be found here.