Pacific Northwest tribes oppose expansion of pipeline in Canada

Members of the Tulalip Tribes of Washington sing along the banks of the Fraser River in Chilliwack, British Columbia, as part of a ceremony to honor the waters and marine life so integral to the Coast Salish way of life. Photo by Chris Jordan-Bloch / Earthjustice

Four tribes in Washington are calling on Canada's National Energy Board to reject the expansion of a crude oil pipeline.

The Suquamish Tribe, the Lummi Nation, the Swinomish Tribe and the Tulalip Tribes presented arguments to the board last week. The tribes say the Trans Mountain pipeline threatens their treaty protected rights and could lead to more oil spills in the Salish Sea.

“The TransMountain Pipeline expansion threatens the ancient fishing grounds of the Suquamish Tribe," Suquamish Chairman Leonard Forsman said in a press release. "Increased traffic disrupts fishing and the real threat of oil spills puts the Salish Sea at an unreasonable risk. It is our duty as stewards to the Salish Sea to oppose this project."

Kinder Morgan plans to use the expanded pipeline to transport more crude oil from Alberta to British Columbia. From there it would be loaded onto tankers that would travel through U.S. waters and shipped to markets worldwide.

Get the Story:
Swinomish, area tribes against proposed oil pipeline (The Anacortes American 1/27)
Native Americans: Canadian Pipeline Will Destroy Our Livelihood (teleSUR 1/25)
US tribes oppose massive pipeline expansion in Canada (AP 1/23)

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