Over the past several weeks, Coastal GasLink has been completing the final stages of clearing work in Wet’suwet’en territory and undertaking preparation for safely crossing the Morice River. The clearing is now complete, and our crews will utilize a micro-tunnel method which is a type of trenchless crossing that is constructed well below the riverbed and does not disturb the stream or the bed and banks of the river. Micro-tunnelling was determined to be the safest and most environmentally responsible method after thorough expert assessments, regulatory requirements and best practices. This is the most precise drilling method for this crossing and utilizes state-of-the-art technology.
During this recent work in Wet’suwet’en territory, concerns were raised, and a small group of individuals accessed a permitted Coastal Gaslink construction site within the vicinity of the Morice River and erected a blockade. Coastal GasLink crews were prevented from accessing the work area, which includes several pieces of heavy equipment.
Coastal GasLink has undertaken years of planning, evaluation and consultation regarding these important and permitted activities and remains committed to continuing this engagement through the construction phase. This includes site monitors for Indigenous communities through our Construction Monitoring and Community Liaison program as well as providing information and updates about construction activities and schedule. These programs continue to be offered to the Office of the Wet’suwet’en Hereditary Chiefs on an ongoing basis.
Our top priorities are the safety of our people, local and Indigenous communities and protection of the environment. We respect the rights of others to peacefully and lawfully express their point of view and understand that there is opposition to the Project.
Coastal GasLink’s activities are permitted and in order to safely conduct our work, an enforceable injunction is in place that prohibits interference with our construction activities, including those within the vicinity of the Morice River.
We are committed to delivering this critical energy infrastructure project and any risk to the safety of our workforce or others in the vicinity of the project route is of the greatest importance. As we have done in the past, we will continue to keep the lines of communications open in an effort to resolve differences and provide information to address concerns. Our preference is to always seek peaceful solutions through constructive dialogue.
Coastal GasLink is under construction today across the entire project route. Currently, over 5,000 women and men are at work building this important infrastructure project. Given the complexity and diversity of the project, our activities require strong collaboration between the Project, our prime contractors, Indigenous and local partners, as well as regulators. This collaboration is an integral part of our path to completion and is a major part of the extraordinary legacy of our project.