Greenpeace joins water ceremony outside Kinder Morgan terminal
A First Nations water ceremony received support from Greenpeace Saturday when their vessels joined kayaks and canoes outside a Kinder Morgan facility in Burnaby.
More than 100 people made the trip out on the water on a hot summer day, banding together to speak up against Trans Mountain's Westridge Marine Terminal.
"100 per cent consensus of people said no to Kinder Morgan, and we'll stand up to them," one of the speakers said at a meeting in North Vancouver afterwards.
The Indigenous-centred ceremony involved song and prayers outside a razor-wire fence installed in the Burrard Inlet on the facility's perimeter.
"The ceremony is expected to renew strength and lay a foundation for the months ahead, as water protectors and land defenders prepare to escalate their opposition to Prime Minister Trudeau's Trans Mountain pipeline and tanker project," organizers said in a statement.
"This water ceremony is about honouring our relationship to the water which has sustained our communities for thousands of years," Protect the Inlet organizer Roxanne Charles said.
"It seems like the importance of our waters, our whales, our forests, our eagles, our salmon, and our people are not as important to the government of Canada as costs to corporate profit. There seems to be no understanding of the cost that this destruction causes to our well-being as Indigenous peoples, or the impact it has on our children and future generations." Greenpeace threw its support behind the fight against more oil tanker traffic that the pipeline will bring.
The ceremony came more than a week after another Greenpeace-involved demonstration over the Inlet. Activists were arrested last Wednesday after spending about 36 hours dangling from the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge.
Coast Salish member Will George, who was one of those arrested in the aerial blockade, was part of Saturday's demonstration. This time, police kept their distance, but their presence was known.
"We got closer to that fence today, and they do have a permit for a fence but not a razor-wire fence," George said.
"There's a lot of things we're concerned about and they need to be regulated."
He thanked those who attended the event Saturday either on the water or on land, saying he felt grateful for the support they've continued to provide.
With a report from CTV Vancouver's Julie Nolin