A federal court has rejected the province’s bid to appeal a National Energy Board (NEB) decision that allows Kinder Morgan to bypass Burnaby bylaws to build the pipeline.
The NEB ruled in February that Kinder Morgan could go forward with construction, which includes building a 2.6-kilometre tunnel between the Burnaby and Westridge Marine terminals, but the provincial government has argued it was a mistake to allow the federal government to have jurisdiction over an interprovincial pipeline.
Mayor Derek Corrigan said he was shocked and angry that the court will not allow the province’s appeal to be heard, and city council may try to appeal this decision to the Supreme Court of Canada.
“I think that it was incumbent upon them to at least review the decision of the National Energy Board considering the very important constitutional issues that were raised,” he told the NOW.
“I think the National Energy Board has shown itself to be an agent of the oil industry. ... I think most people across Canada who have been in opposition to the pipeline feel the process hasn’t been fair and that it is in the direction of the oil companies.”
Greg McDade, lawyer for the City of Burnaby, said not allowing the province to appeal the decision is a serious constitutional issue.
“I’m troubled that such an important decision is not one that would be reviewed. This appeal wasn’t lost, the court simply refused to hear it,” he told the NOW.
“We now have an oil and pipeline tribunal deciding questions of constitutional law that affect a municipality, and we have no court reviewing that decision.”
The City of Burnaby, along with First Nations, environmental groups and the City of Vancouver, is still fighting the full NEB decision in court.