BC Ferries says demonstrators opposed to a liquefied natural gas pipeline across northern British Columbia ended a protest today that tied up traffic at a terminal near Victoria.
Deborah Marshall of BC Ferries says a blockade at the gates of the Swartz Bay terminal was lifted just before 9 a.m. allowing traffic to begin loading onto vessels.
On social media, protesters said they demonstrating against construction of the LNG pipeline from the Dawson Creek area to Kitimat and demanding respect for Wet’suwet’en territory.
Coastal GasLink is building the 670-kilometre pipeline as part of the multibillion-dollar LNG Canada project but hereditary Wet’suwet’en chiefs are opposed to it, despite a B.C. Supreme Court injunction preventing interference with the pipeline’s construction.
Demonstrators said BC Ferries was targeted because of its “deepening integration with the liquefied natural gas industry.”
Marshall says BC Ferries respects the rights of individuals to protest but the company’s concern is for customers having “safe and uninterrupted access to our terminals.”
She says RCMP officers were at the terminal, spoke with protesters and “worked through the situation.”
The BC Ferries website showed the first sailing of the day from Swartz Bay to Tsawwassen on the mainland departed just after 9:30 a.m. The first sailing from the mainland docked more than an hour behind schedule.
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