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Trans Mountain pipeline shift raising reconciliation questions

Stk’emlúpsemc te Secwépemc Nation opposes the route change approved by Ottawa
Workers lay pipe during construction of the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion on farmland, in Abbotsford, B.C., on Wednesday, May 3, 2023. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

The federal Crown corporation constructing the expansion to the Trans Mountain pipeline says it remains committed to “meaningful engagement” with Indigenous communities after being given the green light to move the pipeline route over the objection of a First Nation.

The Canada Energy Regulator approved the route change Monday a week after Trans Mountain Corporation said the original route was going to take an extra nine months and cost $86 million more.

The pipeline crosses the traditional territory of the Stk’emlúpsemc te Secwépemc Nation, and it opposes the change.

It has not yet offered a reaction to the decision.

Greenpeace Canada is condemning the route change approval as a sign Canada is only committed to reconciliation when it is convenient.

Federal ministers refused to weigh in Tuesday, with Finance Minister Chrystia Freeland directing reporters to the regulator and the company and Crown-Indigenous Relations Minister Gary Anandasangaree refusing to answer a question about it at all.

READ ALSO: Trans Mountain pipeline avoids months of delay with route shift approval

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