Anti-pipeline protests have shut down rail networks across Canada as activists protest in solidarity with the Wet’suwet’en people of British Columbia, who are fighting to keep a natural gas pipeline off their land. Canadian National Railway (CN) and VIA Rail have suspended service in response to the blockades. One blockade in the Tyendinaga Mohawk Territory near Belleville, Ontario has cancelled train trips for more than 83,000 people since it was launched on Feb. 6. in response to a police raid on camps set up by the Wet’suwet’en to block the construction of the $6 billion Coastal GasLink pipeline. Another blockade in the Kahnawake Mohawk Territory outside Montreal has shut down a commuter rail into the city, and anti-pipeline activists also held demonstrations in Vancouver, Vaughan, Ontario and Niagara Falls, Ontario. Beyond the environmental impacts of the pipeline, the sovereignty of the Wet’suwet’en Nation is at stake, as the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs did not grant the pipeline company permission to build the pipeline, although the elected councils did. Both CN and the Canadian Chamber of Commerce have asked the government to remove the blockades, arguing that they were harming the country’s economy. CN did obtain an injunction to end the Belleville blockade, but the police have not enforced it.
With ongoing activism continuing in the same vein, the potential for confrontation increases. Lions Gate provides tailored protection services to assist clients whose businesses may be the subject of activism and to reduce provocation. https://www.lgrmg.ca/services/protective-security/
From “Anti-Pipeline Protests Shut Down Canadian Rail Networks” EcoWatch (02/17/20) Rosane, Olivia