Fate of Trans Mountain pipeline awaits landmark federal court decision


Kilometre Zero of the Trans Mountain pipeline system at the Kinder Morgan Edmonton Terminal in Edmonton.

David Bloom / Postmedia, file

The Federal Court of Appeal is expected to hand down a decision Thursday morning that could determine the fate of the turbulent Trans Mountain pipeline project.

The case combined nearly two dozen lawsuits calling for the National Energy Board’s review of Kinder Morgan Canada Ltd.’s project to be overturned.

First Nations, including the Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish on British Columbia’s south coast, argued the federal government failed to adequately consult them before the energy board review or the cabinet decision to approve the project.

In the spring, Ottawa set in motion the purchase Kinder Morgan’s core Canadian assets for $4.5 billion to take ownership of the pipeline, which will transport oil products from the Edmonton area to Burnaby, B.C.

Construction is scheduled to start this fall when the right of way is surveyed in Alberta and B.C. Pipe is slated to be in the ground in early 2019.

The expansion, which has sparked anti-pipeline protests, pro-pipeline rallies and an Alberta-B.C. standoff in recent months, will nearly triple the line’s capacity to 890,000 barrels per day.

Kinder Morgan has already won several court victories, including one last week when the Supreme Court of Canada dismissed an application from the City of Burnaby to overturn a lower court decision.

Company shareholders are set to vote on whether to approve the sale of the pipeline and expansion project to the Canadian government on Thursday morning, 30 minutes after the court decision is released.

The court ruling is expected at 8:30 a.m. Mountain Time.

More to come … 

With files from The Canadian Press



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August 30, 2018 |

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