There has been much press about the BC and Alberta governments reaching an agreement on pipelines. Yesterday, BC Premier Clark and Alberta Premier Redford met and agreed about the five conditions that BC proposed before approving pipelines to being built in this province.
Both Premiers are quick to remind us that they were elected
Last June, I spent three days in a Vancouver courtroom watching the Hupacasath First Nation argue their case against the federal government.
The Hupacasath came robed, just like the judges and the lawyers. They weren’t wigged-out like the Department of Justice benchmen. They wore cedar woven headbands and hummingbird embroidered regalia (and underneath, comfortable blue jeans).
On December 22 the National Energy Board recommended approval of the Northern Gateway pipeline, and some of the people who otherwise distrust government, want it out of the economy, and hate quasi-judicial independent appointed bla bla bla – are lining up to praise the probity and wisdom of the Joint Review Panel. Some of these folks are your friends and relatives. Some have a wider audience.
Enbridge public relations (PR)advisor Hill + Knowlton Strategies (H+K) has become the butt of jokes because of those wildly distorting animation maps for the Northern Gateway pipeline/tanker route and its bungled handling of Enbridge’s 2010 Kalamazoo disaster. But while TV viewers laugh at the tagline – “It’s more than a pipeline, it’s our path to the future” – H+K is ably earning its multimillion-dollar fees from Enbridge and other energy clients through its skill in government relations alone.
Michael Coates, Canadian CEO and Chair of H+K, is reportedly well-regarded by the Harper government, having
In a move that could cost him significant political support, federal NDP leader Thomas Mulcair has endorsed controversial west-to-east pipeline proposals that would move tar sands crude from Alberta through Ontario and Quebec to Atlantic Canada and points beyond.
During a Sept. 28, 2012 speech to the Canadian Club of Toronto, Mulcair said, “Let me be clear, New Democrats support recent proposals to increase West-East pipeline capacity. This is an initiative, led by industry, that will pay economic dividends for every region of our country: new markets for [tar sands] producers in the West, high-paying value-added jobs and lower energy prices in the East.”
What started out as a thought early in 2012, became a sojourn into pipeline resistance when my fellow photographer, Daniel Sikorskyi, and I hopped on our motorcycles this past summer to travel a circular journey through BC and Alberta, exploring the land in the way of the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline (NGP).
My project was to photograph people holding signs so that their voices could be seen. Daniel was going to focus on capturing the story of our journey and the amazing landscapes around us. We also were curious to find out what it really meant to be an enemy of Canada through the eyes of fellow Canadians.
When First Nations, dressed in regalia and beating drums and singing, slowly paraded through the crowd that had gathered in front of the Provincial Legislature in Victoria for Monday’s Defend Our Coast rally, I knew it was going to be an empowering day.