A sign warms of an underground pipeline as people construct a “watch house” near a gate leading to Kinder Morgan’s property during a protest against the company’s Trans Mountain pipeline expansion in Burnaby, B.C., on Saturday March 10, 2018. Protesters must be restrained from obstructing the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, says a British Columbia Supreme Court judge who has granted the company an injunction aimed at preventing people from entering within five metres of two work sites. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck

Trans Mountain granted injunction against pipeline protesters at two B.C. sites

Protesters must be restrained from obstructing the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, says a British Columbia Supreme Court judge

Protesters must be restrained from obstructing the expansion of the Trans Mountain pipeline, says a British Columbia Supreme Court judge who has granted the company an injunction aimed at preventing people from entering within five metres of two work sites.

Justice Kenneth Affleck said Thursday he felt it necessary to make a decision on the second day of a hearing instead of issuing a written order involving outraged demonstrators who have blocked vehicles and workers at the Burnaby Terminal and the Westridge Marine Terminal.

The injunction is indefinite, allowing Trans Mountain to continue work it’s legally entitled to do after the federal government approved the twinning of an existing pipeline from Edmonton to Burnaby in the belief it is in the best interest of Canada, Affleck said.

Trans Mountain has said that while protests began last November, it sought an injunction after demonstrators began intensifying their blockades recently when trees were being cleared. It said construction at the sites in Burnaby, B.C., is expected to last until December 2020.

Affleck agreed with lawyers for two of 15 named defendants in a notice of civil claim that a 50-metre perimeter as part of an interim injunction he granted last week was too broad because it encroached on private property and trails.

Related: Injunction hearing told pipeline critics ‘inconvenience’ Kinder Morgan in B.C.

Trans Mountain’s lawyer, Shaun Parker, requested a structure called Camp Cloud near the Burnaby Terminal be removed, calling it a “hotbed of aggressive activity” for protesters who want to “destroy the project.”

But the judge said it will stay.

“In my view there has to be a means of allowing the protesters who object to this work to remain reasonably close to the site,” Affleck said. ”The plaintiff is going to have to tolerate a certain amount of agitation.”

Parker was also unsuccessful in his request for an order requiring the removal of a structure called the Watch House, saying it’s on a pipeline right of way and would cause significant safety risks.

“I’m sensitive to the concern of those who created this Watch House, that it is of considerable significance to them,” Affleck said of the structure that was erected near the Burnaby Terminal on Saturday, when people marched against the pipeline.

Related: Trans Mountain seeks permanent injunction against protesters in court

He said Trans Mountain would have to demonstrate any emergency need to remove the Watch House but would then have to replace it.

Casey Leggett, a lawyer for one of the defendants, said citizens have a constitutional right to protest the expansion of the pipeline.

“The inconvenience, which my friends call a blockade, hasn’t gotten to the level of establishing irreparable harm,” Leggett said.

He read from affidavits presented in court by a Trans Mountain lawyer, saying the company’s security staff noted protesters have sometimes stood peacefully at or near access roads to two marine terminals in Burnaby without disrupting vehicles or workers and left after police arrived.

He said in one case, a woman was seen praying on a road and didn’t engage with security staff while on another day a woman sat in a lawn chair as vehicles were guided around her at slow speed.

Affleck said while the first protesters’ conduct was unobjectionable, the second woman had no right to sit in the middle of a public road and the police would be justified in removing her.

The judge also suggested Leggett was cherry-picking incidents that did not involve blockades aimed at stopping work at the terminals.

Leggett replied that Trans Mountain had done the same and also focused on blockades rather than inconvenience, which he said does not justify an injunction.

Activists have said they will continue opposing the $7.4-billion project despite the injunction.

Camille Bains, The Canadian Press

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Innisfail RCMP investigate serious collision west of Innisfail

One of the passengers was taken by STARS air ambulance to the hospital

The Red Deer Home Renovation & Design Show runs through to Sunday at Westerner Park

Lots of ideas for fall renovation, decor, design, organization, construction and indoor living projects

Red Deer RCMP investigate second failed ATM theft attempt

This is the second attempt to steal the ATM from Eastview IGA in less than a week

Get your scare on at the annual Zed Haunted House

The haunted house opens tonight at 6833 66th St.

Singer k.d. lang receives Alberta’s highest honour

Celebrated singer-songwriter k.d. lang received the Alberta Order of Excellence in Edmonton

‘Mom, I’m in trouble:’ Canadian faces 10 years for alleged graffiti

Brittney Schneider, another tourist caught spraying message on walls of Tha Pae Gate in Thailand

Feds consulting on national anti-racism strategy behind closed doors

Heritage Minister Pablo Rodriguez says people still face systemic racism in some communities

Pot sales down by nearly 70% on Day 2 of legalization in B.C.

Several products on BC Cannabis Store are still sold out

Colourfully named cannabis products appeal to youth, Tory health critic says

Conservative health critic Marilyn Gladu says the Liberal government needs to do more to ensure cannabis products available online are not enticing to young people

B.C. high school teacher faces sexual assault charges

A Mt. Boucherie teacher has been charged with child luring, sexual exploitation and sexual assault.

Fashion Fridays: You can never have enough shoes

Kim XO, lets you know the best online shopping tips during Fashion Fridays on the Black Press Media Network

Migrants, police mass in town on Guatemala-Mexico border

Many of the more than 2,000 Hondurans in a migrant caravan trying to wend its way to the United States left spontaneously with little more than the clothes on their backs and what they could quickly throw into backpacks.

Trump: ‘Severe’ consequences if Saudis murdered Khashoggi

Pro-government newspaper Yeni Safak on Wednesday said it had obtained audio recordings of the alleged killing of Saudi writer Jamal Khashoggi inside the Saudi Arabia’s consulate in Istanbul on Oct. 2.

Most Read