Canada’s Supreme Court has dismissed an appeal by indigenous groups seeking to halt the Trans Mountain oil pipeline from proceeding.
The ruling ends seven years of legal challenges, Alberta Energy Minister Sonya Savage said, adding that most Canadians, including many indigenous communities, want to share in Trans Mountain’s economic benefits.
Expansion of the 67-year-old pipeline, which runs from Alberta to the British Columbia coast, is underway. The corporation that runs the pipeline is finalizing the expanded route with landowners and needs permits approved. When completed, the expansion will nearly triple capacity to 890,000 barrels of oil per day.
The indigenous groups who sought to halt the Trans Mountain expansion are “extremely disappointed” with the Supreme Court decision, said Tsleil-Waututh Nation Chief Leah George-Wilson.
Most Canadian crude oil moves to U.S. refineries and expanding the Trans Mountain pipeline may allow more Canadian oil to go to Asia. Expansion of the pipeline is scheduled for completion in late 2022.