The Parliament Blog

Canadian Churches Speak Out on Northern Gateway Pipeline

Protestors assembled outside the King Edward Hotel where Enbridge held its annual general meeting in May. A number of environmental groups as well as native communities are opposed to the Northern Gateway pipeline. Photo from Rick Madonik/Toronto Star file photo.

by John Cotter
from The Star

Churches across Canada say they have a religious duty to speak out on the proposed Northern Gateway oilsands pipeline.

Next week, delegates at the United Church of Canada general council meeting in Ottawa will debate a resolution that calls on the church to reject construction of the $6-billion Enbridge project that would take diluted bitumen from Alberta to the British Columbia coast.

The resolution was drafted in support of aboriginals in B.C., who worry a spill would poison the land and water, and directs the church to send the results of its vote to the federal, B.C. and Alberta governments and the media.

Mardi Tindal, moderator of the United Church, said care of the Earth is an important part of the faith and the church can’t shy away from the pipeline just because it is controversial and politically divisive.

“People care so much about this. People understand that you cannot separate economic health from ecological health,” she said from Toronto.

“The church has a responsibility to contribute to the conversations that make for the best public policy for the common good.”

The United Church of Canada is not alone.

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