This month, the Squamish Nation joined a growing group of First Nations speaking out against Enbridge’s Northern Gateway pipeline.
Squamish, along with the Tsleil-Waututh Nation, signed onto the Save the Fraser Declaration — a document in which more than 100 aboriginal groups are asserting their indigenous laws to bar tar sands-related projects in their territories.
“I think it is important for us to start raising awareness on issues like resource distraction,” Squamish Nation Chief Ian Campbell said.
The document was drawn up two years ago, as First Nations banded together to protect the Fraser River watershed and declare their opposition to the proposed pipeline.
The controversial proposal would see a pipeline built from the Alberta oil sands to a tanker facility in Kitimat. The provincial NDP opposes the $5.5-billion plan, as well as a host of First Nations’ voicing concern about the environmental threat of tankers transporting oil along B.C.’s coast. Squamish Nation is certainly impact be such development, Campbell said.
The decision by the Tsleil-Waututh and Squamish to sign the document also hits Kinder Morgan, which is proposing to expand its Trans Mountain Pipeline from Alberta to its Burnaby oil port — which sits within Tsleil-Waututh traditional territory.