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Demonstrations pledged as Northern Gateway submissions begin

Protesters upset public is barred from hearing room, must watch proceedings via television feed


VICTORIA—Demonstrators pledge to be out in force as public hearings begin in Victoria on the proposed Enbridge Northern Gateway pipeline.

The group SocialCoast says its members will protest at noon today outside the hearings, slated for a Victoria hotel.

Oral submissions are being heard by the federal review panel considering the nearly 1,200-kilometre dual pipeline stretching from the Edmonton area to Kitimat, on the B.C. coast.

In addition to environmental, social and economic concerns about the pipeline, critics are angry that the deadline to speak at this round of submissions passed months ago.

They are also upset that the public is barred from the hearing room and must watch the proceedings via a television feed at a location nearly five kilometres away, across the Gorge waterway.

Oral submissions will be heard in Victoria until Jan. 11, with similar hearings held in Vancouver from Jan. 14 to Feb 1 and a single day of submissions set for Kelowna on Jan. 28.

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