Target: Prime Minister Justin Trudeau
Goal: Halt construction on the Grand Rapids Pipeline Project pending consultation with the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation.
A lawsuit stating that they were not consulted during the process to approve the Grand Rapids Pipeline has been filed by the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation (ACFN), a First Nation tribe in Northern Alberta. When completed, the 460-kilometer pipeline project will stretch from Northern Alberta down to Edmonton and will carry 900,000 barrels of tar sands oil per day.
The path stretches through ACFN hunting and fishing lands guaranteed by the ACFN’s treaties with the Canadian government. This project was approved in just two weeks by the Alberta Energy Regulator, and ACFN leaders have stated that the only correspondence their community received regarding the pipeline was a notice after it was approved.
Canadian history is marred with regular treaty violations regarding First Nations, Inuit, and Metis communities, especially in circumstances involving natural resources. Given the regularity of pipeline spills, should this pipeline be completed, it is certain that there will be a spill on ACFN land that would contaminate the water, land, and ecosystem. Sign our petition and demand a halt to construction until the Canadian government properly consults the ACFN and other First Nations communities.
Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,
As you may know, the Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation (ACFN) have challenged the construction of the Grand Rapids Pipeline Project. When completed, the pipeline will pass over and near ACFN hunting and fishing lands covered by the ACFN treaty with Canada. Given the rapid, two-week approval process of this project and the certainty of a spill on ACFN land if the pipeline is completed, I believe that it is critical that pipeline construction be halted pending a thorough consultation process.
In the interim, I believe it is critical to examine whether pipeline projects such as the Grand Rapids Pipeline are in the interest of the majority of Canadians and compatible with Canada’s commitments under the Paris Agreement.
Given protests against the Energy East and Northern Access Pipelines as well as Canadian and First Nations involvement in the protests against the Dakota Access Pipeline, I believe it is clear that a significant number of Canadians and First Nations oppose further pipeline projects. Furthermore, it is estimated that 85 to 90 percent of proven fossil fuel resources must stay in the ground to avoid catastrophic climate change.
Allowing a pipeline project estimated to move 900,000 barrels of tar sands oil per day to continue is not responsible and will undermine Canada’s attempts to play a leadership role in the global effort against climate change. I urge you to do everything in your power to halt the Grand Rapids Pipeline Project.
[Your Name Here]
Photo credit: Kai Lehmann