Finance minister acknowledges skepticism, vows to build Trans Mountain expansion

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Meanwhile, B.C. has been responsibly issuing permits as they've been requested, he said.

The approval of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion has sharpened divisions between Canada's indigenous communities, with some fiercely opposing the line and others seeking to own it.

And demands by local communities at two spots along the 1,150-km route, including one at the Coldwater First Nation which suffered from a pipeline leak, that it alter its path, will be dealt with through consultations, said Anderson. Alberta-based Iron Coalition is meeting with the province's government this week as it puts together financing arrangements and seeks members, Tony Alexis, chief of the Alexis Nakota Sioux Nation and a member of the group's leadership team, said by phone.

"What stunning hypocrisy for Prime Minister Trudeau to approve a massive tar sands oil pipeline the day after his government declared a climate emergency and reaffirmed its commitment to the Paris Agreement", said Patrick McCully, climate and energy program director.

"So let me say to British Columbians who value our environment, who cherish our coast, who expect their government to stand up for their interests, we will not abandon our responsibility to protect our land and our water", Heyman said. "Our top priority is making sure there's no spill in the first place".

Trudeau also said the government will start another round of engagement with First Nations to provide a direct benefit from the project to them.

And Trudeau said indigenous people would make money from the expansion. "I don't believe he actually wants it built", said Scheer. "A lot of people in communities [who] are hurting very much now would like to have those opportunities".

But it appears Horgan is mostly out of options, said Richard Johnston, Canada Research Chair in public opinion, elections and representation at the University of B.C.

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"Mr. Trudeau fails on the climate file, he fails on this file and frankly I think Canadians deserve better", he said. "It's a sad day for all, that this has moved forward purely for political reasons and not for economic of environmental reasons".

Once complete, the project will triple the capacity of Trans Mountain, which carries crude from Alberta's oil sands to British Columbia's Pacific Coast.

Weaver said he's happy with what he has seen the NDP do so far in opposition to the pipeline and "we support government continuing down this path". Trans Mountain confirmed about 30% of the pipe has been delivered to sites along the route, including the Lower Mainland.

Shane Gottfriedson, former Tk'emlups te Secwepemc chief and B.C. director for Project Reconciliation, an Indigenous group looking to buy a majority stake in the expansion project, said it's exciting times now that the pipeline has been approved.

When it comes to Coldwater specifically, the Federal Appeal Court ruling stated that "missing from Canada's consultation was any attempt to explore how Coldwater's concerns could be addressed".

The federal government was forced to reconsider the project after the Federal Court of Appeal ruled last August that Ottawa had not adequately consulted the six First Nations that had challenged the project's approval, and "unjustifiably" had not considered increased tanker traffic related to the project, which will have a negative effect on endangered killer whales.

Horgan promised in the 2017 B.C. election to "use every tool in our tool box to stop the project from going ahead".

The pipeline will triple the capacity of the pipeline system from 300,000 to 890,000 barrels a day and over the years has generated significant concern from various groups in the Tri-Cities, including the city of Port Moody, which opposed the project because of concerns about spills, and local environmentalists anxious about a proposal to stage construction materials on Colony Farm Regional Park, a proposal that was later dropped. From there, the oil will flow across the Pacific adding the possibility of oil spills to the growing list of potential environmental disasters.

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