CALGARY — The Federal Court of Appeal dealt the Trans Mountain expansion project a major setback Thursday, ruling the government of Canada had not fulfilled its duty to consult with First Nations on the pipeline from Alberta to British Columbia.
The decision means the National Energy Board will have to redo its review of Kinder Morgan Canada’s project. In a written decision, the court says the energy board’s review was so flawed that the federal government could not rely on it as a basis for its decision to approve the expansion.
The court also concludes that the federal government failed in its duty to engage in meaningful consultations with First Nations before giving the green light to the project. That decision means the government will have to redo part of its consultations with Indigenous groups.
The judge wrote that “the consultation framework selected by Canada was reasonable and sufficient. If Canada properly executed it, Canada would have discharged its duty to consult.”
“However, based on the totality of the evidence I conclude that Canada failed in Phase III to engage, dialogue meaningfully and grapple with the concerns expressed to it in good faith by the Indigenous applicants so as to explore possible accommodation of these concerns,” the ruling states.
Full article: Financial Post