Energy board to hear traditional Indigenous evidence in Trans Mountain review

VANCOUVER — The National Energy Board will hear oral traditional evidence from Indigenous groups in the coming weeks as part of its new review of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

The Federal Court of Appeal struck down the federal government’s approval of the project in August, citing inadequate Indigenous consultation and the energy board’s failure to review the project’s impacts on the marine environment.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s government ordered the energy board to review the marine impacts and submit a report no later than Feb. 22, and on Wednesday the board unveiled its schedule for oral traditional evidence.

Thirty-one Indigenous groups or individuals from Canada and the U.S. are scheduled to participate and the hearings will be held in Calgary the week of Nov. 19, in Victoria the week of Nov. 26 and in Nanaimo, B.C., the week of Dec. 3.

Some First Nations that won the court battle in August, including British Columbia’s Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish Nations, say the new process is too rushed and they’re considering filing fresh court challenges after the board issues its report.

The energy board responds to concerns about the timeline in documents released Wednesday, saying there’s already significant evidence on the record and legislation requires it to conduct proceedings within the time limit set by the federal government.

The board includes oral traditional evidence because it “understands that Indigenous peoples have an oral tradition for sharing knowledge from generation to generation,” it says in the documents.

“This information cannot always be shared adequately or appropriately in writing,” it says.

The traditional evidence previously provided in the first Trans Mountain review remains on the record, it says, and board members will read transcripts prior to the new hearings.

The board adds that Indigenous interveners should file any scientific evidence or expert reports as written evidence.

Those scheduled to participate include the Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh, the pro-pipeline Cheam First Nation, a coalition of U.S. tribes and B.C. Green party member of the legislature Adam Olsen, who is Indigenous.

The project would increase tanker traffic seven-fold in Burrard Inlet off Metro Vancouver’s coast, raising concerns about impacts on salmon and endangered southern resident killer whales.

Just Posted

Springbrook Skate Park gets financial boost

Province approves $125,000 grant for proposed skate park

ReThink Red Deer gets thumbs up from city on pollinator barn structure

Group is hoping to get a $40,000 building grant

Driver who backed into Red Deer pizzeria sentenced

David Andrew Amstutz sentenced for failing to remain at the crash scene

Team Alberta athletes arrive in Red Deer on Saturday for pre-games orientation

Excitement is building with less than a month to go, says Team Alberta spokesperson

UPDATED: STARS Lottery is back

Lacombe STARS patient tells his story

Trudeau says politicians shouldn’t prey on Canadians’ fears

The Prime Minister was speaking at a townhall in Ontario

Olympian snowboarder Max Parrot diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

Each year in Canada, approximately 900 people are diagnosed with Hodgkin’s lymphoma

‘Prince of Pot’ Marc Emery accused of sexual assault, harassment

Emery denied the allegations, but a Toronto woman says she is not the only one speaking out

Asteroids are smacking Earth twice as often as before

The team counted 29 craters that were no older than 290 million years

Canada’s arrest of Huawei exec an act of ‘backstabbing,’ Chinese ambassador says

China has called Canada’s arrest of Huawei chief financial officer Meng Wanzhou ‘politically motivated’

In limbo: Leftover embryos challenge clinics, couples

Some are outright abandoned by people who quit paying storage fees and other couples struggle with tough decisions

Netflix rejects request to remove Lac-Megantic images from ‘Bird Box’

At least two shows on Netflix’s Canadian platform briefly use actual footage of the 2013 tragedy

Teen vaping is an epidemic: US government

E-cigarettes are now the top high-risk substance used by teenagers, outpacing cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana

‘I never said there was no collusion,’ Trump lawyer says

President Donald Trump’s lawyer Rudy Giuliani says he has ‘never said there was no collusion’

Most Read