Protesters claimed to have seized a drilling barge in Burrard inlet today, but Kinder Morgan begs to differ.
Spokesperson for the energy giant Ali Hounsell says they have permits from Port Metro Vancouver to conduct offshore geotechnical operations for the proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.
“There is no work planned for today. There are crew onboard the barge but there was no work underway. I understand that two people did approach the barge on kayak and are presently still there on the edge of the barge. I wouldn’t characterize it as they have ‘seized’ the barge because there are crew onboard but they are present there.”
Hounsell says they will keep an eye on the situation.
The group purported to have the blessing of the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation but in a media release issued later in the day by the aboriginal group it says not so much.
“Today a group of local activists shut down work contracted by Kinder Morgan, relating to offshore geotechnical operations on the Burrard Inlet by Westridge Marine Terminal. It confirms that there is widespread and significant opposition to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline and Tanker expansion project, including local governments and individual residents.
The Tsleil-Waututh government has no special knowledge related to actions reported in the media concerning a take-over of a contractor’s drilling barge near Kinder Morgan’s Westridge Marine Terminal. The actions represent individual considerations, not those of the Tsleil-Waututh government.
While we respect all those opposed to the expansion and their perspectives on the best way to voice that opposition, the Tsleil-Waututh Nation government will continue to oppose the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline expansion project by all legal means necessary. The Nation will be back at the Federal Court of Appeal on January 22, 2016 to emphasize how flawed the NEB process is and to start over and consult with the Nation first.”