Three separate legal actions are being launched today to overturn the federal approval of the Pacific Northwest LNG project.
The Gitwilgyoots, Gitanyow and Skeena Wild are expected to file this morning in Vancouver.
Executive Director of the Skeena Wild Conservation Trust Greg Knox says the location of an export facility on Lelu Island is unacceptable.
“Their conclusions that there wouldn’t be any harm to the salmon habitat are seriously flawed, and they failed to do an accumulative study of the greenhouse gas effects,” says Knox.
He says the First Nation’s litigation is focused on a lack of consultation throughout the regulatory process.
“Skeena Wild’s case is focused on the science and the lack information that was given to the ministry of environment and the federal cabinet to make an informed decision,” says Knox.
Ottawa approved the LNG project planned on Lelu Island near Prince Rupert pending 190 conditions.
Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says significant concerns around salmon were a factor in the decision.
“So we took the time that was required; we took three additional months – some people were not happy about that. Because we really wanted to understand the impact on a very important fishery,” says McKenna.
However, the location on Lelu Island on a salmon estuary has baffled opponents.
“There’s 18 other LNG projects that are proposed for the north coast, we’re not taking them to court; it’s this one, it’s because of the location,” says Knox.
First Nations chiefs and others supporting the litigation are rallying in opposition over the project today in Vancouver.
Wet’suwet’en hereditary Chief Na’moks, Ron West with the Lake Babine Nation and Richard Wright with Maddii Lii will be part of a ceremony there.
Below is an interactive map of communities and First Nations who are opposed and in support of PNW LNG (via Discourse Media)