More than 100 people took part in a protest on Edmonton’s High Level Bridge on Monday night to show solidarity with Wet’suwet’en people who oppose a natural gas pipeline project that would run through the First Nation’s territory in northern B.C.
Protesters stopped as songs were sung before walking across the bridge that connects downtown Edmonton to Old Strathcona.
The Coastal GasLink project is a 670-kilometre pipeline that would transport natural gas from Dawson Creek to Kitimat. It is already more than half completed. According to Coastal GasLink, almost all of the route is cleared and 200 kilometres of pipeline has already been installed.
TC Energy is the Calgary-based company that is building the pipeline.
The elected council of the Wet’suwet’en Nation and others nearby have agreed to the project, but it has been opposed by Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs.
After the dispute resulted in protests and rail blockades across Canada last year, a memorandum of understanding was eventually signed between the hereditary chiefs and the federal and provincial governments, but tensions recently resumed.
Over the weekend, two journalists, including Edmontonian Amber Bracken, were among 15 people arrested by the RCMP near a pipeline worksite. On Monday, the pair were released on conditions.
The RCMP said they were arrested after refusing to leave “building-like structures” near a drilling site for the pipeline
READ MORE: Journalists released with conditions after arrest at B.C. pipeline dispute
The arrests came days after members of the Gidimt’en clan, one of five in the Wet’suwet’en Nation, set up blockades along a forest service road.
More to come…
–With files form Sarah Komadina, Global News and Brenna Owen, The Canadian Press
© 2021 Global News, a division of Corus Entertainment Inc.