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Burnaby Mountain activist writes about waiting for decision in Kinder Morgan case

Photo by Mychaylo Prystupa

On Friday, Kinder Morgan’s request for an injunction against protesters on Burnaby Mountain was adjourned until no later than November 17. What this shows is that after a three-day hearing, Associate Chief Justice Austin Cullen was not ready to accept Kinder Morgan’s argument based on urgency, and that lawyers for protestors had raised complicated issues that required further consideration.

In the meantime, caretakers continue to watch over Burnaby Mountain, standing on public land while the City of Burnaby and the Tsleil-Waututh First Nation pursue constitutional challenges to Kinder Morgan’s forced-access to this park and Conservation Area.

Support for the five named-defendants has been overwhelming. Over $50,000 was donated, by more than 1100 individuals, to the defendant’s legal defence fund. Additionally, a letter of support was signed by almost 150 environmental, social justice, and labour organizations from around North America.

Kinder Morgan’s suit against non-violent protestors appears to be a classic SLAPP (Strategic Lawsuit Against Public Participation), intended to put a chill on opponents and critics. In the eyes of many, it is a thinly veiled attempt to undercut constitutional rights and democratic process. Defendants continue to rely on contributions from and the support of the public to help them stand up for their Charter rights.

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Athabasca tar sands, photographed by Andrew S. Wright

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