Canadian Manufacturing

Northern Gateway: More legal challenges filed over federal approval

Pair of B.C. First Nations filed appeals over approval of controversial Northern Gateway project



VANCOUVER—Two more legal challenges have been filed against the federal government’s approval of the Northern Gateway oil pipeline, with more expected.

As the 30-day deadline nears, the Heiltsuk and Kitasoo-Xaixais nations added their names to a growing list of groups that want the Federal Court of Appeal to review the cabinet decision.

The First Nations, whose territory on the central coast of British Columbia is along the tanker path of the project, say they will fight the pipeline in court “and, if necessary, on the land.”

The environmental group B.C. Nature has also filed an application with the court, bringing to at least four the number of legal challenges that have been filed in the past few days.

All claim the federal cabinet’s decision last month is invalid because it’s based on a flawed report from a joint review panel.

B.C. Nature’s lawyer, Chris Tollefson of the Environmental Law Centre at the University of Victoria, says cabinet was also legally required to give its reasons for approving the pipeline, which it did not.

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