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Kinder Morgan pipeline expansion timeline and next steps

Feb. 2011

First inklings Kinder Morgan is serious about expanding Trans Mountain pipeline. It’s been “oversubscribed,” meaning shipping demand exceeds the volumes the line can handle, which is 300,000 barrels per day.

August to December 2011

The Wilderness Committee’s Ben West, the Tsleil-Waututh Nation and Burnaby Mayor Derek Corrigan come out against the pipeline expansion. Newly elected MP Kennedy Stewart is also raising concerns.

April 2012

NEB approves Kinder Morgan pipeline But final decision rests with federal cabinet

The Kinder Morgan pipeline plan just cleared a major hurdle.

The National Energy Board is recommending the federal government approve the company’s plan to twin the Trans Mountain pipeline as long as 157 conditions are met.

The announcement came down today (Thursday), after more than two years of hearings and a record number of participants weighing in.

TPP 'worst trade deal ever,' says Nobel-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz

Trans-Pacific Partnership should be revised to advance interests of citizens, not corporations, he says

Nobel Prize-winning economist Joseph Stiglitz says the Trans-Pacific Partnership may well be the worst trade agreement ever negotiated, and he recommends Canada insist on reworking it.

"I think what Canada should do is use its influence to begin a renegotiation of TPP to make it an agreement that advances the interests of Canadian citizens and not just the large corporations," he said in an interview with CBC's The Exchange on Thursday.

Province steps into pipeline proposal

It appears Kinder Morgan will have another hoop to jump through if an expansion of its Trans Mountain Pipeline is ever going to become a reality.

Last week, B.C.’s Environmental Assessment Office (EAO) officially notified the energy company the proposed billion-dollar project would have to go through the province’s environmental assessment process.

According to the letter dated April 8, Kinder Morgan Canada may not undertake or carry on any activity related to the Trans Mountain Expansion Project without an EA certificate.

Playing games with B.C. Hydro

Ask most British Columbians what they expect from B.C. Hydro and the answer would likely be "keep my power on and keep my rates low."

Because the Crown corporation does just that - although the electricity rates continue to climb - it is viewed in mostly positive ways. Anyone who has had a B.C. Hydro lineman come to their house in a windstorm to reconnect a power line (you can put me in that crowd) is understandably grateful for and even admiring of much of the services B.C. Hydro offers.

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Case Study - Trans Mountain Pipeline ULC v. Dutton et al.

In October 2014, Alan Dutton and four other individuals were served with a lawsuit, an application for an injunction, and affidavit material suggesting that they were liable for damages in the millions of dollars. The plaintiff was Trans Mountain Pipeline ULC (“Trans Mountain”), a Canadian subsidiary of international energy giant Kinder Morgan.

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Will the Charter Protect Me?

Everyone in Canada should have the protection of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms to freely voice their concerns and to organize public demonstrations. But they don't. SLAPP suits undermine and subvert democratic rights and the democratic process. In fact, the Charter of Rights and Freedoms does not protect protestors and critics and the courts impose a huge burden to achieve any sort of justice and redress. The Charter of Rights and Freedoms is part of the Canadian Constitution and while it is supposed to protect citizens against government it is not generally applied to disputes between private parties. Freedom of thought, belief, opinion and expression, including freedom of the press and other media or communications are guaranteed by Section 2(b) of the Charter and freedom of peaceful assembly by section 2(c). However, unlike the First Amendment to the US Constitution, the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms applies only to protection from government intervention - not private disputes for alleged defamation and protests. Read more

Will the Courts Protect Me?

The answer is almost certainly no. The courts are biased in allowing cases to proceed to trial. To have a lawsuit dismissed, a target of a SLAPP suit must prove on the balance of probabilities that a suit was filed for a malicious purpose such as to silence a person on a matter of public concern or to stop them from demonstrating. To prove malicious intent against a large corporation with almost unlimited resources is difficult at best. In short, it is very difficult and expensive to have a SLAPP suit dismissed in Canada even if there is no credible proof that a lawsuit is an abuse of process, malicious and without factual basis. This is unlike the United States where over half the States have specific anti-SLAPP legislation and First Amendment rights to free speech that provide rules for the better protection of the right to protest and speak out against government agencies and corporations. Read more

Thank you!

Thanks to all our supporters. In particular, thanks to West Coast Environmental Law for two grants to develop recommendations for effective anti-SLAPP suit legislation, Dr. Jane Shin, MLA Burnaby-Lougheed for continuing to push for anti-SLAPP legislation and to students at Kwantlen Polytechnic University for continued support. Click here to read statements of support to reclaim democratic rights.

Resources

Breaking the Silence: the need for anti SLAPP legislation. EcoJustice (2010)

Report to Ontario Attorney General. Moran Anti-SLAPP Advisory Panel (2010)

Recommended Legislative Measures to Counter Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation BC Civil Liberties Association (2012).

SLAPP: the BC Experience. Tollefson and Scott (2010)

Anti-SLAPP Handbook. West Coast Environmental Law (2002).

Recommendations for Anti-SLAPP Legislation with Appendices. Environmental Defense Working Group (2015).

Contact Us

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info[at]stopslappsuits
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