Hundreds protest pipeline outside Trudeau’s Vancouver hotel

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau is in B.C. in support of Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

Hundreds of protesters opposed to the expansion of the Trans Mountain oil pipeline demonstrated Thursday night outside a Vancouver hotel where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau addressed a Liberal party fundraising dinner.

They chanted “Kinder Morgan has got to go” as they marched several blocks through downtown to a hotel where the Liberals were meeting.

Related: Trudeau says Trans Mountain pipeline will go through

Emma Pullman, campaign manager with SumOfUs, said the protest is intended to show Trudeau that there is a lot opposition to the project and the Liberals stand to lose seats in B.C. if the pipeline is built.

“In a time when we need to be talking about a transition and talking about reconciliation the prime minister is talking about building a pipeline that’s going to be in the ground for 30 years,” she said.

“There’s literally thousands of people who are opposed to it, many of whom are voters.”

Chief Bob Chamberlin, vice-president of the Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs, said he wants a joint consultation with all the communities on the pipeline route through British Columbia.

“This does not have First Nations consent and we value the environment more than money,” he added.

Trudeau’s speech to the fundraising event was interrupted by Cedar George-Parker, a young Indigenous leader from the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation who shouted: ”The pipeline is not happening, the youth will stand up and stop it. … You lied to the people, you lied to our people.”

As George-Parker peacefully left the room, Trudeau said: “If you were to stick around you could hear me talk about how the environment and the economy go together. … We know that building a strong future requires a broad range of voices.”

It was a similar theme used by Trudeau earlier Thursday in Victoria, where he said his message of support for environmental protection and the pipeline are the same as he visits British Columbia and Alberta this week.

Related: Protesters gather ahead of Trudeau visit to Victoria Coast Guard station

The federal government needs to build a strong economy and protect the environment at the same time, Trudeau said, adding that he has faith in his government’s ocean protection and emergency preparedness plans.

“I would not have approved this pipeline had I not been confident of that,” he said.

“It’s precisely because of these stringent measures that we can stand behind our approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion with confidence. This project will be safe, jobs will be created and this pipeline will be built.”

About 100 protesters chanted “Leave it in the ground” not far from where the prime minister was getting a tour of a Canadian Coast Guard ship in Victoria.

Trudeau said such decisions aren’t made by “those who shout the loudest,” but are taken on the basis of facts, science and evidence.

About 200 people have been arrested near Kinder Morgan’s marine terminal in Burnaby, B.C., during recent protests against the project.

The pipeline, which would triple the amount of oil flowing from Alberta to Burnaby, was approved by the federal government in 2016.

Protesters say it will raise the risk of oil tanker spills in the Burrard Inlet and it can’t be completed if the government is to meet its climate change commitments to cut Canada’s greenhouse gas emissions another 200 million tonnes a year by 2030.

Trudeau is to travel to Fort McMurray, Alta., on Friday to tour a new Suncor oilsands facility.

— With files from Dirk Meissner in Victoria

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Linda Givetash and Amy Smart, The Canadian Press

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

COVID-19 tests come back negative in remote First Nation community

“There are no suspected cases in the community at this time.”

Wildway Farms open for business in Hagensborg

Local entrepreneurs Gwyneth Anderson and Joseph Battensby are hard at work at their new business

Young boy finds mask stolen during recent break-in

Gage Pootlass immediately took the mouse mask back to its rightful owner, Kathleen Booth

Bear gets into garbage at Thorsen Creek Landfill after waste disposed into wrong bin

A grizzly bear accessed garbage that was put in the wrong bin and ended up outside the electric fence

Man, 54, charged in connection with fatal attack of Red Deer doctor

Doctor was killed in his walk-in clinic on Monday

One dead as fish boat sinks off southern Vancouver Island

Shawnigan Lake-registered Arctic Fox II went down off Cape Flattery, west of Victoria

Landlord takes front door, windows after single B.C. mom late with rent

Maple Ridge mom gets help from community generosity and government

42 more people test positive for COVID-19 in B.C.

The province has recorded no new deaths in recent days

Joe Biden selects California Sen. Kamala Harris as running mate

Harris and Biden plan to deliver remarks Wednesday in Wilmington

Lawsuit launched after Florida child handcuffed, booked and briefly jailed

Suit alleges “deliberate indifference” to what should have been handled as a behavioural issue

Russia approves vaccine, Putin hopes to begin mass production

Critic calls decision to proceed without thorough testing ‘dangerous and grossly immoral’

Doctor slain in Alberta medical clinic was devoted father, husband

Red Deer doctors on edge after attack on colleague who had two young daughters

Most Read