B.C. Supreme Court hands another setback to pipeline
VANCOUVER — An alliance of First Nations is celebrating a British Columbia Supreme Court ruling that it says could set back the Northern Gateway pipeline by years and throw a wrench into another high-profile project review. The case was brought forward by the Gitga’at First Nation and Coastal First Nations, which represents nine aboriginal communities along B.C.’s northern and central coast, including the Gitg’aat. At the centre of the challenge was an equivalency agreement in which British Columbia gave the National Energy Board the power to review the controversial pipeline proposal. The court found the province “breached the honour of the Crown” by failing to consult with the Gitga’at and Coastal First Nations. That means the equivalency agreement is invalid and the province must make its own decision on Northern Gateway — after consulting with and accommodating First Nations along the route.