Ongoing Call for Justice from Yinka Dene Freedom Train
Forty members of the Yinka Dene Alliance travelled thousands of kilometres from their territories in British Columbia to Toronto to address the May 9, 2012 annual meeting of Enbridge Inc., sponsor of the Northern Gateway tar sands pipeline.
The Yinka Dene Alliance represents six Dakelh (Carrier) and Tse Kay Nay (Sekani) Nations in the interior of B. C. who oppose the construction of a pipeline that would carry 525,000 barrels a day of diluted bitumen from the tar sands to Kitimat for export to Asia.
Recent KAIROS analysis shows how the proposed Northern Gateway pipeline poses profound challenges for Indigenous rights and for ecological justice. The pipeline would traverse hundreds of salmon spawning streams and pass through areas prone to landslides and occasional earthquakes. The oil supertankers would have to navigate narrow marine channels that are among the most difficult bodies of water in the world to pilot.
Yinka Dene elders have stated their “unbroken opposition to Enbridge’s dangerous tar sands pipeline. Tar sands pipelines and supertankers will not be permitted in our lands and waters.” April Churchill, vice-president of the Haida Nation told the Enbridge meeting “We don’t base the well-being of life on money. Money will not change our minds.”
At several stops en route in Edmonton, Saskatoon and Winnipeg, citizens, including many church members, turned out for rallies and ceremonies to welcome the Freedom Train and express their solidarity.
Persons who were unable to greet the train and the Yinka Dene in person are invited to express their solidarity by signing their petition calling on Parliament “to ban tar sands pipelines and tankers in their lands and waters.”