Second First Nation abandons review

Another B.C. First Nation has pulled out of the review of the Northern Gateway oil pipeline project that would ship Alberta oil to a tanker port on the B.C. coast. The Nuxalk First Nation says it’s quitting because the federal government plans to retroactively change the rules for the hearings — something the Nuxalk say will compromise the regulatory review.

BELLA COOLA, B.C. — Another B.C. First Nation has pulled out of the review of the Northern Gateway oil pipeline project that would ship Alberta oil to a tanker port on the B.C. coast.

The Nuxalk First Nation says it’s quitting because the federal government plans to retroactively change the rules for the hearings — something the Nuxalk say will compromise the regulatory review.

Band Chief Andrew Andy says Prime Minister Stephen Harper has already decided to approve the Enbridge project, which he says would violate First Nation rights and put pose the risk of a major oil spill on the B.C. coast.

This is the second aboriginal group to abandon the joint federal-B.C. review of the Northern Gateway plan.

Several other First Nations refused to take part in the review but the Nuxalk say they joined in good faith until the federal government’s actions showed that good faith is not being reciprocated.

Earlier this week, the review panel delayed public hearings for a day in the town of Bella Bella after panel members were greeted by First Nations demonstrators opposed to the Enbridge project.