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People of all faith protest against Kinder Morgan, block gates at local facility

Last Updated Apr 28, 2018 at 2:11 pm PDT

Protesters gather at the gates of the Kinder Morgan facility in Burnaby on Apr. 28, 2018. (Hana Mae Nassar, NEWS 1130 Photo)

People risk arrest as they voice their opposition to the Kinder Morgan pipeline project

Burnaby Mountain is the site of another weekend protest against a controversial pipeline project

BURNABY (NEWS 1130) – Hundreds of protesters representing all faiths took to the gates of Kinder Morgan on Burnaby Mountain, once again, this weekend to speak out against the controversial pipeline expansion.

This isn’t the first time protesters have gathered in front of the facility, at times defying a court-imposed injunction requiring they stay at least five metres away at all times.

However, Saturday’s march was a little different as it brought together people representing several religions.

A Muslim woman named Amal that NEWS 1130 spoke to told us she thinks it’s important for her religion to be represented.
“Actually, environmental justice is a key part of Islam, many people don’t know that and justice for people in general — fighting for equity and truth is part of my faith tradition.”

She and others are responding to calls from Indigenous spiritual leaders who take a bold stand for reconciliation and decolonization.

“To stand up when the land is being abused and destroyed. So, to me it’s really important to be here as a person of faith to basically fulfill my obligation as a Muslim.”

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Rev. Laurel Dykstra helped organize the rally and says it’s important to bring faith into this fight to stand in solidarity with the Indigenous people of this land.

“From the different faith groups, we have all kinds of mandates that are about care for our neighbour, that are about justice, that are about land, that are about creation.”

She believes this is a faith issue and adds it’s important to stand with those native to this land. Some people who took part in today’s event say they’re willing to be arrested for their beliefs. “I am going to do what it takes to stop the Kinder Morgan pipeline,” adds Dykstra.

Protests at the gates of Kinder Morgan have been ongoing for months with more than 200 people having already been arrested, including federal Green Party Leader Elizabeth May and NDP MP Kennedy Stewart.

Kinder Morgan previously announced it was suspending all non-essential activities and spending related to the project. It issued an ultimatum to Ottawa. The company wants the project to be given a green light by the BC, Alberta and federal governments by no later than May 31st and it wants financial security.

Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has affirmed several times while addressing the issue with reporters that the pipeline will be built. Alberta’s premier says they’re in talks with Kinder Morgan to create a new, risk-free financial plan.

BC, meantime, maintains it will use “every tool in the toolbox” to legally challenge the federally approved project. Premier John Horgan says there are also “gaps” in Ottawa’s spill response plan.