About 100 students from across Canada were arrested on Parliament Hill on Monday for protesting Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline.
Some 400 youth marched from the University of Ottawa to the Hill, where some were cuffed for trying to cross police barricades. The group towed signs that read “keep it in the ground” and “climate leaders don’t build pipelines.”
Gabriel D’Astous, a UBC grad and one of the organizers who was arrested, told the NOW the peaceful rally was meant to send Prime Minister Justin Trudeau two messages.
“The first one was that if Justin Trudeau wants to be a climate leader, he has to listen to climate science and respect indigenous rights, both of which tell us he can’t build the Kinder Morgan pipeline,” he said. “The second key thing is … as youth, our generation is overwhelmingly opposed to any new fossil fuel projects, and we will continue to show up across Canada in solidarity with folks defending the land and the water. Justin Trudeau can be assured that if he doesn’t reject Kinder Morgan, he’ll see us again and he will definitely not have our vote in the next election.”
D’Astous, 23, was released a few hours after he was arrested. He and the others were banned from returning to Parliament Hill for three months.
The federal government’s final decision on the Kinder Morgan file is due Dec. 19.
The proposed expansion, if approved, would increase capacity from 300,000 barrels a day to 890,000. Twenty new tanks would be added to existing storage terminals in Burnaby (14), Sumas (one) and Edmonton (five).