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Tsawout gear up for Trans Mountain Pipeline hearing – Times Colonist

A small Island First Nation is conducting its own research into the impact of an oil spill and increased tanker traffic as it prepares to participate in the National Energy Board of Canada’s review of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline proposal.

“We realized we needed to be able to analyze the process and their studies with our own research,” said Eric Pelkey, a hereditary chief of the Tsawout First Nation who is helping to co-ordinate the marine use study.

Tsawout’s traditional territories, along the southern tip of the Island and Haro Strait, will see increased oil tanker traffic if the pipeline project succeeds.

As such, the First Nation was named an intervenor in the review process — meaning they can submit written questions and present to the panel — and has already been approached by Kinder Morgan about the plan.

The findings in the marine-use study will go to chief and council to assist them in their Kinder Morgan presentation, said Pelkey, adding the results will be significant to other coastal First Nations.

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