Supporters join First Nation in fight against northwest coast LNG plant

A battle against a liquefied natural gas plant proposed for an environmentally sensitive region near Prince Rupert, B.C., is gathering powerful support.

Lax Kw’alaams Hereditary Chief Donnie Wesley’s letter opposing the Pacific Northwest LNG plant has been signed by more than 70 First Nations, scientists, unions, businesses, university and faith groups.

Wesley’s letter urges Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his environment minister to reject the plant proposed for Lelu Island and Flora Bank, an area environmentalists say is vital to the Skeena River salmon run, the second largest run in Canada.

There’s concern the plant will irreparably harm salmon returning to spawn, and also destroy the sea grasses on Flora Bank that shelter salmon smolts heading back to the ocean.

A spokesman with the T. Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation says of all the thousands of miles of coastline, Pacific Northwest chose the one location most critical for Skeena salmon.

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency decision is expected within months and critics say it is the final regulatory hurdle the project must overcome before proceeding.

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