We Are Unfrackable
We need all hands on deck to support the Wet’suwet’en, who are defending their unceded territory (Yintah) from Coastal GasLink’s (CGL) liquefied natural gas (LNG) pipeline. The Dinï ze’ and Ts’akë ze’ (Chiefs) wholeheartedly oppose the CGL project, which would turn pristine forests and salmon streams into a fossil fuel corridor.
The Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs have launched two separate legal actions to defend their rights and title from unwanted industrial activity, and to hold the governments of Canada and British Columbia accountable to climate commitments for future generations.
Donate to support the Wet’suwet’en legal defence fund and take a stand for future generations.
about this campaign
Coastal GasLink is proposing a 670-km pipeline carrying fracked gas from Dawson Creek to a proposed LNG facility in Kitimat. The pipeline is owned by TransCanada, the same corporation funding the Keystone XL and Energy East Pipeline projects. If built, the pipeline would irreversibly transform the ecology and character of northern B.C. It would also lock in decades of fossil fuel extraction at a time when scientists are warning of untold suffering unless all nations rapidly scale down production of fossil fuels.
Challenging permit and human rights violations through Judicial Review
Since time immemorial the Wet’suwet’en have been stewarding and protecting their traditional territories. Now, they are defending land, air and water from the Coastal GasLink pipeline. In February 2020 the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs launched two separate legal actions.
The first legal action, launched by all clans of the Wet’suwet’en, acting in unity — seeks a judicial review of Coastal GasLink’s environmental assessment based on multiple permit violations by the company, along with a failure to implement recommendations of the National Inquiry into Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women and Girls.
A Charter Climate Challenge
The second legal action is a Constitutional challenge asking the Federal Court to declare that Canada has a constitutional duty to keep the country’s greenhouse gas emissions well within the Paris Agreement limit of
2 ̊C above pre-industrial levels. If successful, the lawsuit could lead to far-reaching changes to Canada’s environmental legislation. It would enable the federal cabinet to cancel approvals previously given to fossil fuel projects such as the LNG export facilities and pipelines proposed for Wet’suwet’en Territories and the northwest B.C. region.
“The climate crisis is already hitting our House territories hard. You only have to look at the shrinking Hudson Bay Mountain glacier and count the salmon. If Canada is allowed to continue approving infrastructure for fracked gas projects on a 40-year timeline, our territories will become a wasteland before the project licenses expire.”
-Dini Ze’ Lho'imggin, Alphonse Gagnon
JR APPLICATION DISMISSED
BC Supreme Court dismisses the Wet’suwet’en Application for a Judicial Review of B.C.’s decision to extend the environmental certificate for the Coastal GasLink pipeline.
Likhts’amisyu Clan of the Wet’suwet’en appeals the Federal Court’s decision to strike the Charter challenge.
FEDERAL COURT STRIKES
Federal Court strikes Likhts’amisyu Charter challenge as “not justiciable”, i.e. not appropriate for the court to decide.
Judicial Review of BC's granting of permit extension to Coastal GasLink heard October 1-2; at issue are multiple permit violations and a failure to apply recommendations of the Missing and Murdered Aboriginal Women and Girls Report.
Coastal GasLink crews attempt to re-start work in the Morice River area, resulting in RCMP enforcement action on Indigenous land protectors.
Solidarity protests and actions erupt in support of Wet'suwet'en across the country: Kahnawake Mohawk community members south of Montreal erect a blockade on a CP rail line.
#WeAreTheStronghold concerts organized; $40k raised before COVID-19 shutdown cancels shows in Ottawa & Winnipeg.
EVICTION ORDER ISSUED
Dark House (Unist’ot’en) notifies Coastal GasLink of eviction from territory, citing violations of Indigenous law.
INJUNCTION GRANTED TO CGL
BC Supreme Court grants CGL an injunction against land defenders in Wet'suwet'en territory.
JUDICIAL REVIEW LAUNCHED
B.C. Environmental Assessment Office grants CGL an extension to their project permit, paving the way for construction in Wet'suwet'en territory.
The Wet’suwet’en challenge Federal Court decision to strike constitutional action After the Federal Court struck the Wet’suwet’en constitutional and Charter challenge last November, two Houses of the Wet’suwet’en Likhts’amisyu (Fireweed) Clan are pressing ahead with…
The B.C. Supreme Court has dismissed the Wet’suwet’en petition for a judicial review of Coastal GasLink’s permit extension. In the wake of the decision, Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs vowed to take tall steps necessary to ensure…
Open Letter: Designation of Oil and Gas Work as “Non-Essential” is Critical for Protecting the Lives and Rights of Vulnerable First Nations Facing COVID-19
Dr. Bonnie Henry Provincial Health Office- Via Email: email@example.com Dear Dr. Henry, The Union of BC Indian Chiefs (UBCIC) is writing in support of the Wet’suwet’en Ts’ako ze’ (female chiefs) who penned an open letter on…
Wet’suwet’en Houses, through their Hereditary Chiefs, have launched two legal challenges over Canada’s approval of multiple fossil fuel projects in their territory. These challenges are strategically designed to address both the immediate issue of the Coastal GasLink LNG pipeline being built without Wet’suwet’en consent, as well as Canada’s ongoing failure to address the climate emergency.
Legal challenge No. 1, supported by all the Hereditary Chiefs acting in unity, seeks a Judicial Review of a project extension for Coastal GasLink’s pipeline, granted by the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office (BCEAO) in October 2019 for another 5 years. The action argues that the B.C. Environmental Assessment Office had a duty to assess new evidence of the project’s harms, which in this case means the recent findings of the Inquiry on Missing and Murdered Indigenous Women and Girls, which found direct links between extractive industries, “man camps” and increased violence against Indigenous women. The BCEAO was also required to take into account Coastal GasLink’s record of non-compliance.
Legal challenge No. 2, a constitutional and Charter of Rights challenge brought by two Houses of the Likhts’amisyu (Fireweed Clan) through their House Chiefs, is an ambitious, long-term legal challenge seeking a comprehensive overhaul of Canada’s environmental legislation to enable urgent action on climate change.
This visionary, sweeping action puts forward the argument that Canada has a constitutional duty to protect its citizens from climate catastrophe, and draws a line against reckless fossil fuel developments that will push us past the tipping point. The action invokes Constitutional provisions about “peace, order and good government” as well as the equality rights of Wet’suwet’en young people and future generations under the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.
The case specifically names Coastal GasLink and Pacific Trails fracked gas pipelines along with LNG export facilities in Kitimat as particularly high-emitting fossil fuel projects that are likely to breach Canada’s (already inadequate) emissions targets. In the name of future generations, the legal challenge argues that Canada’s failure to do its fair share to avert a climate catastrophe would breach the equal protection of the law guaranteed by the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.