• Blueberry River First Nations v. Attorney General of Canada, Case No. 36676; Saulteau First Nations v. Attorney General of Canada, Case No. 3667; Supreme Court of Canada, 14 September 2017
  • October 11, 2017 | Author: Scott Kerwin
  • Law Firm: Borden Ladner Gervais LLP - Vancouver Office
  • The Supreme Court of Canada dismissed applications for leave to appeal brought by two British Columbia First Nations concerning approval of a pipeline project.

    The respondent NOVA Gas Transmission Ltd. applied to the National Energy Board for approval of a project involving the construction of a new pipeline. Following an environmental assessment, the NEB submitted a report to the Minister of Natural Resources concluding that the project met the threshold of public convenience and necessity, and that it would not likely cause significant adverse environmental effects. On 10 June 2015, an Order-in-Council was issued directing the NEB to issue a Certificate of Public Convenience and Necessity.

    The Blueberry River and Saulteau First Nations, both beneficiaries of Treaty 8, sought leave pursuant to section 55 of the National Energy Board Act for judicial review of the OIC. The basis of the judicial review application would be that they were inadequately consulted. The Saulteau also argued that the NEB lacked jurisdiction to consider approval of the pipeline project as it was not an “interprovincial” undertaking. On 12 August 2015, a justice of the Federal Court of Appeal refused leave. No reasons were provided.

    The applications to the Supreme Court of Canada for leave to appeal were filed in October 2015. The Supreme Court of Canada dismissed the leave applications, with costs to the respondent NOVA Gas.

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