Cedar George-Parker addresses a crowd of protesters opposed to Kinder Morgan’s plan on the Trans Mountain pipeline extension on April 7 in Burnaby, B.C. (Darryl Dyck/The Canadian Press via AP)

B.C. Indigenous leaders head to Texas to urge investors to drop pipeline project

Chiefs plan to attend a Kinder Morgan investors meeting in Houston for a last-ditch appeal

Two B.C. Indigenous leaders are headed down to Houston to make an 11th hour appeal for Kinder Morgan investors to halt the Trans Mountain oil pipeline expansion.

Chief Judy Wilson of the Neskonlith Indian Band near Chase, and Rueben George of the Tsleil-Waututh Nation Sacred Trust Initiative of North Vancouver, planned to attend the company’s annual stockholders meeting on Wednesday morning to tell investors about Indigenous opposition to the project, which would twin an existing pipeline that extends from central Alberta to the B.C. coast.

READ MORE: Chilliwack-area chief touts economic benefits of pipeline deal

“Kinder Morgan stockholders have not been properly advised that Indigenous rights are recognized in the Canadian constitution and have won again and again through the courts,” said Wilson in a Union of BC Indian Chiefs news release Monday.

“Kinder Morgan does not have the required consent of Indigenous Nations along the pipeline and tanker route, and it never will. The executives at Kinder Morgan have a responsibility to make these facts well known to its stockholders.”

The pair also plan to present investors with the New York State Common Retirement Fund’s shareholder proposal on sustainability reporting, which they say found that widespread opposition to a project can be damaging to its financial viability.

The proposal is being presented on behalf of the Comptroller of New York State, an investor in Kinder Morgan.

In a statement, Kinder Morgan noted that George had attended their annual general meeting in the past.

“Kinder Morgan respects Indigenous rights and title in Canada and the approvals granted for the Trans Mountain expansion project followed many years of engagement and consultation with communities, Indigenous groups and individuals,” a spokesperson said in an email.

“The project has signed 43 Agreements with Aboriginal groups in BC and Alberta, 33 of which are located in BC. Where our project will cross First Nation Reserve lands, we have received their expressed consent.”

The expansion has faced continued resistance in B.C., with Premier John Horgan fighting it in court as Alberta and the federal government hinting at possibly financially backing it to keep Kinder Morgan in the game.

READ: B.C.’s dispute over bitumen control likely to end up in Supreme Court: lawyers

Kinder Morgan halted all “non-essential” work on the pipeline in early April ahead of a May 31 final investment deadline.

Hundreds of people have been arrested for violating a court injunction against protesting too close to the Kinder Morgan work sites in Burnaby.

More than 150 have been charged with civil contempt and were set to appear in court Monday to find out which protester will instead face criminal charges.


@katslepian

katya.slepian@bpdigital.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Fifth annual cycling celebration in Summerland

District says its time to go all out for cycling week

Keeping track of bats

Seeking bat colonies and volunteers for B.C. bat counts

Airbnb hosts earning millions in the Okanagan

The Okanagan was among the list of three Canadian wine markets.

Medical Foundation: Unsung supporters of the hospital

They are among the unsung supporters of Penticton Regional Hospital, but we… Continue reading

Photos: It’s all fun and games at the midway

The carnival is in Penticton at the South Okanagan Events Centre

Trans Mountain pipeline: Is it worth the risk?

Concerns range from the threat of an oil spill to the impact of tanker traffic on wildlife

Wildfire sparked north of Merritt, estimated 8 hectares

BC Wildfire Service is responding to the fire near Chattaway Lake FSR 27 kilometres north of Merritt

Call for artists for upcoming South Okanagan exhibition

The Penticton Art Gallery is inviting artists from across the globe to submit artworks

B.C. to spend $181M to create 200 general practitioner jobs

Jobs will go to new medical school graduates

Vernon company wins Ozone best production

Powerhouse Theatre’s Calendar Girls will move on to the Theatre BC Mainstage Festival

Federal leaders trade barbs about India trip at press gallery dinner

Justin Trudeau’s infamous trip to India earlier this year was the focus of many of the jabs

B.C. VIEWS: Our poverty reduction plan is already in place

NDP has another promise it needs to appear to keep

Most Read