Enbridge Panel Turns Tail When Met by Singing Demonstrators

B. McPherson
Video of protest demonstration in Comox March 31st



Bella Bella people from the Heltsuk First Nation met the plane carrying their chief and the Enbridge Northern Pipeline Panel Sunday. The panel promptly cancelled hearings scheduled for the next few days and scampered back to Vancouver.

They have been met time and again with peaceful demonstrations that speak against the installation of the Enbridge Northern Gateway twinned pipelines through British Columbia’s Great Bear Rainforest. The prospect of supertankers plying the treacherous waters of the coast grounding and spilling their cargo have many speaking out.

The RCMP officer stationed in the small village of Bella Bella spoke about the peaceful nature of the demonstration which was partly to welcome back a fellow band member.

"From what I understand it was a peaceful demonstration - there were religious regalia being worn by band members and there was drumming, and singing as well, at the airport," said Const. Lesley Smith, an RCMP spokeswoman for the North District of B.C.” Vancouver Sun

The provincial member of the legislative assembly also confirmed that he thought the demonstration was without threat.

Friday and Saturday saw hearings held in Comox on Vancouver Island. Protesters gathered outside the meeting room to register their disapproval of the proposed project.

The federal government has been pushing hard for this pipeline, not waiting for the panel to hear and assess in a neutral manner the value of the proposed project. Both the prime minister and the minister of Natural Resources have already given their support to the project. Joe Oliver, minister, has lashed out at what he terms radicals and foreigners who are interfering in a political process. He has included such charities as the Sierra Club in his condemnation.

Opposition to the project in BC is building as the public learns more about the project.

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