COLUMNS: Summer out with a bang

Although summer doesn’t end until Sept. 22, the day after Labour Day is fall for most

Although summer doesn’t end until Sept. 22, the day after Labour Day is the beginning of fall for most of us.

One younger member of our family wondered where the summer went. Many of us are wondering that.

Summer went out with a bang on the federal scene. The Trudeau government bought Kinder Morgan’s Trans Mountain pipeline for $4.5 billion just as the Federal Court of Appeal nixed the National Energy Board’s OK for the pipeline’s expansion. When in Opposition, Justin Trudeau insisted the Harper government’s NEB process was inadequate, but once in power, he kept it. First Nations and environmentalists went to court arguing the process was flawed and they won.

READ MORE: Williams Lake protests Kinder Morgan

On Aug. 24, Alberta Premier Rachel Notley bragged she was “batting a thousand” because court cases trying to stop the pipeline expansion failed. When the last try succeeded, she freaked out. Although her buddy Justin is promising to build the extension anyway, she’s blaming him for the court decision and as the feds don’t have any wine to boycott, she is pulling Alberta out of the federal carbon tax deal. A real class act.

Another First Nations/environmental issue, the permit for Taseko Mine to do exploratory drilling in the Fish Lake area, is closer to home. For over a decade Tsilhqot’ins have opposed the development of a mine in the area, but that doesn’t mean they oppose development. What they object to is the ecological damage the mine will bring.

READ MORE: How will Ottawa finish a pipeline Kinder Morgan couldn’t?

They want to protect the area for future generations to develop a sustainable local economy. The proposed Dasiqox Tribal Park sees conservation areas for land, water and wildlife management that “also offer options for aligning and reconciling competing interests in the area.”

That even might include mining for that gold and copper if it can be done without damaging the environment.

Diana French is a freelance columnist for the Tribune. She is a former Tribune editor, retired teacher, historian and book author.

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