"There is no Secwepemc consent for Kinder Morgan" say the Secwepemcul'ecw Assembly.
Secwepemc elders, youth, children and families are calling for an immediate shutdown of the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline in light of the forest fires raging through their territory. They fear the pipeline poses a serious safety hazard. They also say the unprecedented increase in fires is evidence of global warming created, in part, by Alberta tar sands oil transported by Kinder Morgan.
"We are in a critical state of emergency dealing with the impacts of climate change,” said Secwepemc teacher Dawn Morrison, adding “this includes catastrophic flooding and fires, as well as social issues such as poverty, increased violence against our women and high rates of death from substance abuse in our communities.”
Morrison, founder of the Working Group on Indigenous Food Sovereignty, says “the health of our families and communities relies heavily on our ability to harvest wild salmon and access clean drinking water, both of which are at risk if the Kinder Morgan pipeline was ruptured or impacted by the fires.”
The Secwepemc’ulecw Assembly is demanding a moratorium on any pipeline proposing to transport crude or diluted bitumen through their vast traditional territory where they are stewards of the forests, fields and waterways that flow from the Rockies on their way to the ocean.
The Assembly met last month to reaffirm its territorial title and authority saying, “We have never provided and will never provide our collective free, prior and informed consent - the minimal international standard - to the Kinder Morgan Trans Mountain Pipeline Project.
“We explicitly and irrevocably refuse its passage through our territory. Investors take note, there is no Secwepemc consent for Kinder Morgan. Kinder Morgan will not pass through Secwepemc Territory.”
To view the Secwepemcul'ecw Assembly Declaration visit: secwepemculecw.org
For interviews contact:
Jeffrey McNeil – 416.720.4358
Kanahus Manuel – 250.852.9002 or 323.804.5106