Supporters of the Wet’suwet’en blockade marched on Baker Street on Tuesday afternoon. Photo: Tyler Harper

VIDEO: Nelson protesters rally in support of Wet’suwet’en pipeline blockade

The rally was one of many held Tuesday across Canada

Kat McCooeye had one person in mind as she stood in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en pipeline protesters over 1,000 kilometres away.

“I’m here because I’m a human being and I have a daughter and I want her to have eagles and grizzlies and bears and salmon,” said McCooeye. “I’m here for all life.”

McCooeye joined a Nelson rally Tuesday afternoon in support of the Wet’suwet’en First Nation’s Gidimt’en clan. Its members set up a blockade on a forest service road southwest of Houston, B.C., to stop construction of the 670-kilometre Coastal GasLink pipeline.

The $6.2-billion project will carry natural gas from Dawson Creek to a proposed facility in Kitimat.

The blockade was torn down Monday by the RCMP and 14 people were arrested. A camp set up by the Wet’suwet’en’s Unist’ot’en clan, which had an injunction granted against it by the B.C. Supreme Court in December, remains in place.

Although the Wet’suwet’en’s band council agreed to a $13-million deal in support of the pipeline, its hereditary chiefs have unanimously denounced that agreement.

McCooeye, who grew up in the Gitxsan territory that neighbours Wet’suwet’en land, said the fight against the pipeline is an environmental issue bigger than one blockade.

“Those women, those children, those families and elders and hereditary chiefs up there are fighting for the land, for the water, for the animals, but not just for the Wet’suwet’en. They are fighting for all people, all life.”

Rallies like the one in Nelson were held throughout Canada and the United States Tuesday. Protesters gathered at noon outside the office of Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall, who also serves as the provincial government’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources.

Shannon Leigh and Vanessa Bate stood wrapped around each other to ward off a cold wind during the rally.

Leigh said she saw a correlation between the pipeline and the logging of local watersheds.

“We’re being overtaken by the corporate machine, as well. Our politicians do nothing; they speak for nobody. They are full of empty promises and words that never speak or ring true to our hearts,” she said.

“It’s all this big corporate game. If the people don’t start standing up and taking responsibility for this act of war that’s going on right now, then we can just expect they are going to do the same to us, which they are.”

Related:

‘Welcome to battleground B.C.’: Hundreds rally against LNG pipeline

Most First Nations in northern B.C. support LNG pipeline, group says

NDP critic calls RCMP intervention ‘pretty lame’ in B.C.’s anti-LNG protest

RCMP arrest 14 people in northern B.C. over anti-LNG pipeline protest

Injunction extended against camps blocking B.C. LNG pipeline work

Tom Nixon said he showed up to Tuesday’s rally to support friends who live in the region where the pipeline is to be constructed.

“We don’t need this pipeline. This pipeline is to bring fracked natural gas to Kitimat so they can liquefy it and try to sell it to the Chinese. The Chinese [have] got plenty of natural gas of their own, they don’t need ours.”



tyler.harper@nelsonstar.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

 

Tuesday’s protest began outside the office of Nelson-Creston MLA Michelle Mungall, the provincial government’s Minister of Energy, Mines and Petroleum Resources. Photo: Tyler Harper

Just Posted

Paramedics union raises alarm over spike in out-of-service ambulances

Staffing shortages affecting service levels in Kootenays

West Kootenay rod and gun clubs slammed for animal-killing contests

Wildlife activists are targeting the club and two other B.C. organizations

Interior Health hospitals to serve more made in B.C. food

New initiative by the Ministry of Agriculture to serve more B.C. produced food in hospitals

VIDEO: Restaurant robots are already in Canada

Robo Sushi in Toronto has waist-high robots that guide patrons to empty seats

Permit rejected to bring two cheetahs to B.C.

Earl Pfeifer owns two cheetahs, one of which escaped in December 2015

Real-life tsunami threat in Port Alberni prompts evacuation updates

UBC study says some people didn’t recognize the emergency signal

Care providers call for B.C. seniors’ watchdog to step down

The association also asks the province to conduct an audit and review of the mandate of her office

Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from B.C. roaster recalled due to botulism scare

“If you purchased N7 Nitro Cold Brew Coffee from Cherry Hill … do not drink it.”

B.C. man gets award for thwarting theft, sexual assault – all in 10 minutes

Karl Dey helped the VPD take down a violent sex offender

Baby left alone in vehicle in B.C. Walmart parking lot

Williams Lake RCMP issue warning after attending complaint at Walmart Wednesday

College of the Rockies to add 96 beds for student housing in Cranbrook

$17.7 million project featuring six cottege-style buildings to be completed by 2020

Nowhere to grieve: How homeless people deal with loss during the opioid crisis

Abbotsford homeless advocate says grief has distinct challenges for those living on the streets

Most Read