Fracking North America
Chevron teams up with Apache Canada to bring fracking pipeline to First Nations territory
Fracking with Chevron
The United States isn’t the only North American country in which hydraulic fracturing—fracking—for hard-to-access shale gas and oil is an increasingly controversial issue, not least because of the possibility of groundwater contamination from the hundreds of chemicals used in the process. Canada, too, is eyeball-deep in the fracking fracas, including First Nations peoples—native Canadians—who are faced with the construction of a pipeline “across unceded indigenous territory to carry fracked [liquefied natural] gas [LNG] to the coast” of western Canada (see www.facebook.com/events/137069669801177/) for easy export to Asian markets.
The Pacific Trail Pipeline project “is a proposed [288-mile] pipeline that will carry natural gas from Summit Lake, [34 miles] north of Prince George [in British Columbia], to the proposed Kitimat LNG facility on B.C.’s north coast,” according to a press release from Apache Canada and Chevron Canada Limited, the partners involved in the project.
A Global Day of Action against Chevron and the Pacific Trail Pipeline was held on March 30; here in Chico, a number of people protested at the local Chevron station on East Avenue in solidarity with members of the affected Unist’ot’en Clan of the Wet’suwet’en nation.
“American oil giant Chevron wants to build a destructive pipeline across unceded indigenous territory to carry fracked gas to the coast, and export climate change to the world. We say NO,” said the Global Day of Action’s Facebook page. “We do not need fracked gas, we do not want another pipeline, and we will not stand by as colonial governments and greedy corporations push us over the climate catastrophe cliff edge.
“Chevron is the new corporate face of the Pacific Trail Pipeline project, having recently become 50/50 partners with Apache to build a fracking gas pipeline across 500 kilometres of largely unceded land, from Summit Lake to LNG plants planned for Kitimat. On March 30th we will greet them with resistance across B.C. and around the world. As politicians put economic growth and industry interests ahead of carbon common sense and indigenous rights, it is up to us to take direct action to raise the cost of pushing ahead with the project, and raise the stakes in the PR battle.
“Everywhere they operate, Chevron exploits land and people for money, often through the use of force, and without taking responsibility for the consequences. Battles against environmental racism and illegal oil wars, movements for indigenous sovereignty and migrant justice—we amplify our resistance by uniting our struggles, so we are calling for solidarity actions and events against Chevron across Canada and around the world.
“The Pacific Trail pipeline can still be stopped. There is a huge groundswell of public opinion against B.C.’s carbon corridor, the Unis’tot’en are mounting a determined resistance against incursions onto their territory, and a space is being carved out where we can change the course of B.C.’s energy future.”
As the Unist’ot’en Action Camp put it during its successful Indiegogo.com fundraiser: “The Unist’ot’en understand that clean rivers you can drink from, healthy forests full of berries, and habitat for moose, bears, and salmon are infinitely more valuable than any amount of financial gain. This has been their land since time immemorial. And yet government and industry are intent on creating a massive corridor of oil and gas pipelines in order to facilitate expansion of the tar-sands gigaproject and highly destructive fracking fields in northeastern B.C., what environmentalists are referring to as the Carbon Corridor and a global-warming time bomb.”