Enbridge’s Northern Gateway announced last week it will not appeal a recent Federal Court of Appeal decision that reversed the project’s federal approval certificate.
Northern Gateway released a statement saying it supports the path outlined by the Federal Court of Appeal for the federal government to re-engage with directly affected First Nations communities.
“We believe that meaningful consultation and collaboration, and not litigation, is the best path forward for everyone involved,” said John Carruthers, Northern Gateway’s president. “We look forward to working with the government and Aboriginal communities in the renewed consultation process.”
The 2014 conditional approval of the contentious project by the previous Conservative-led federal government was overturned earlier this year. The Federal Court of Appeal cited lack of consultation with First Nations affected by the project as the reason for overturning the project approval.
“The consultation process was too generic: Canada and the joint review panel looked at First Nations as a whole and failed to address adequately the specific concerns of particular First Nations,” said the ruling.
The project was volleyed back to the federal government’s cabinet for redetermination. The federal government will now have to conduct additional consultations with affected First Nations communities before issuing a new decision on the project.
Enbridge Inc. proposes the construction of a 1200-km twin pipeline that would carry diluted bitumen from Alberta’s oilsands to B.C.’s coast, passing directly through Burns Lake.
Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen said the Federal Court of Appeal’s decision was “the right one, and one that northerners have known for a long time.”
“People across the northwest were insulted by the [previous] federal government’s cold indifference toward our communities, our land our water, and our way of life,” said Cullen.
Northern Gateway says the project would add over $300 billion to Canada’s gross domestic product over the next 30 years, 4000 construction jobs and 1000 long-term jobs.