Protests rage across the country
14 people were arrested at an anti-pipeline barricade in northern British Columbia
OTTAWA—THE RCMP’S raid on an anti-pipeline barricade in northwestern British Columbia sparked rallies from Vancouver to the heart of the nation’s capital on Tuesday, where demonstrators voicing solidarity with hereditary chiefs of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation forced the prime minister to change the location of a scheduled meeting with Indigenous leaders.
Even in some parts of the United States, people organized events to denounce the arrest of 14 people at the Gidimt’en checkpoint near Houston, B.C. on Monday night. The barricade was set up to block the Coastal Gaslink project in defiance of a B.C. Supreme Court injunction. Issued in December, the injunction allows for construction of the 670-kilometre natural gas pipeline Alex Spence, centre, who is originally from Haida Gwaii, beats a drum during a march in support of pipeline protesters, in Vancouver, on Jan. 8, 2019.
from the northern Rocky Mountains to the planned $40-billion LNG facility in the coastal town of Kitimat — an export terminal the Liberal government boasts is the “largest” private sector investment in Canadian history.
In Ottawa, demonstrators
marched from Parliament Hill to a government building on Sussex Drive, where Prime Minister Justin Trudeau was slated to address a forum of leaders from First Nations who have signed modern treaties and self-government agreements. But after the demonstrators entered the
that limit greenhouse gas emissions.
The estimate, by the research firm Rhodium Group, pointed to a stark reversal. Fossil fuel emissions in the United States have fallen significantly since 2005 and declined each of the previous three years, in part because of a boom in cheap natural gas and renewable energy, which have been rapidly displacing dirtier coal-fired power.
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building and continued to drum and chant slogans inside, Trudeau’s security detail decided to move the location of his speech to another site, an official with the Prime Minister’s Office said.
When Trudeau finally spoke, almost two hours behind schedule, he did not mention the protests or address the situation in B.C. Instead, he highlighted areas where he said progress had been made, such as planned child-welfare reforms and coming legislation on Indigenous languages. He also praised those present for representing how First Nations can move beyond “the colonial relic of the Indian Act.”
“To be perfectly frank, there’s lots of work ahead of us. I don’t want to dwell on the past, but you know, and I know, that previous governments and institutions spent years ignoring your communities and your concerns,” Trudeau said.
More on the pipeline protests at thestar.com/federal
Carbon dioxide emissions in U.S. rose by 3.4 per cent in 2018.