Grandmother sentenced to seven days in jail for protesting Trans Mountain pipeline expansion - APTN NewsAPTN News

Grandmother sentenced to seven days in jail for protesting Trans Mountain pipeline expansion

(Laurie Embree addresses media before her sentencing hearing at the B.C. Supreme Court, July 31, 2018. Embree was arrested in June for protesting the Trans Mountain pipeline project at the gates of Kinder Morgan. Submitted by Protect the Inlet)

APTN News
A 70-year-old grandmother has been ordered to serve seven days in jail for blocking Kinder Morgan’s Burnaby, B.C. gates in opposition to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project.

Laurie Embree, a resident of 108 Mile Ranch located more than 400 kilometres north of Burnaby, learned of her sentencing Tuesday. She’s the first of nine activists facing jail time following their arrests in June.

In her statement to the court before sentencing, Embree said there have been “many times when our laws have supported injustices,” including slavery, child labour and the apprehension of Indigenous children.

“I truly believe that when we have laws that support injustices, it is the duty of all good men and women to stand up and challenge those laws,” she said, according to a press release.

Jean Swanson, an Order of Canada recipient and Vancouver City Council candidate, was also arrested for blocking the gates of Kinder Morgan’s Westridge Marine Terminal on June 30. She’s also facing up to seven days in custody and $5,000 in fines.

“I think it’s an unjust project – not only unjust, but a dangerous project – that we’re trying to stop,” she told APTN News. “It’s also a ridiculous expenditure of tax money to keep people who aren’t violent or doing anything bad – who are actually doing something good – in jail.”

Following opposition by the B.C. government and anti-pipeline activists, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau announced the federal government would purchase the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion project for $4.5 billion, a transaction due to be finalized this fall. That doesn’t include the estimated $7.4 billion cost to twin the pipeline from Edmonton to Burnaby.

Swanson said she would rather see the Trudeau government spend that money on clean drinking water for reserves or invested in solar and wind energy projects.

Susan Lambert, former president of the B.C. Teachers’ Federation, is also facing jail time for protesting the Trans Mountain expansion project. She told APTN she’s fighting for her grandchildren who risk being saddled with the effects of climate change.

(Susan Lambert addresses media before her first hearing on July 31, 2018 after she was arrested for blocking the gates of Kinder Morgan. Submitted by Protect the Inlet)

“For me, it’s a sad, sad day,” she said Tuesday, following Embree’s sentencing. “For me, personally, I am facing the same consequence, but I have to face that consequence because I took, knowingly, the action I took.”

At this point, she said, the country is faced with a “dilemma” – to fight the court injunction preventing activists from blocking Kinder Morgan’s gates or protest from the sidelines.

“We’ve done the political work, we’ve done protesting and none of it has had any affect. In fact, now, we are complicit. My tax dollars are going to help rescue Kinder Morgan from this project and have it ongoing,” she said.

Both Lambert and Swanson will learn of their sentences in the B.C. Supreme Court on Aug. 15.

According to Protect the Inlet, an anti-Trans Mountain pipeline activist group, more than 210 people have been arrested this year for defying the court injunction.

The pipeline construction is expected to escalate in August, and, according to Protect the Inlet, protests will heat up too.

The group said an “action” is planned at the tanker terminal on Aug. 1 at 8 a.m.

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16 Responses to “Grandmother sentenced to seven days in jail for protesting Trans Mountain pipeline expansion”

  1. shirleypatterson@telus.net'
    Shirley Patterson August 3, 2018 at 6:02 pm #

    At least I would be able to look my grandchildren in the eyes and know that I am doing the right thing by protesting the Kinder Morgan pipeline. We must protect our environment for the sake of future generations. A better plan would to put our tax dollars to use by speeding up the process on renewable energy. I am a person who has never broken any laws until this atrocity denied the rights of our indigenous people to protect their land and their people. I am horrified that I voted for Justin Trudeau only to get rid of Stephen Harper! I am ashamed that I let the Green Party members down.

  2. s***************@telus.net'
    Shirley Patterson February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    At least I would be able to look my grandchildren in the eyes and know that I am doing the right thing by protesting the Kinder Morgan pipeline. We must protect our environment for the sake of future generations. A better plan would to put our tax dollars to use by speeding up the process on renewable energy. I am a person who has never broken any laws until this atrocity denied the rights of our indigenous people to protect their land and their people. I am horrified that I voted for Justin Trudeau only to get rid of Stephen Harper! I am ashamed that I let the Green Party members down.

  3. PlanetWatch1@yahoo.ca'
    Larry Powell August 2, 2018 at 12:24 am #

    Outrageous.

  4. p***********@yahoo.ca'
    Larry Powell February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    Outrageous.

  5. jarretd31@gmail.com'
    JD August 1, 2018 at 6:45 pm #

    “We’ve done the political work, we’ve done protesting and none of it has had any affect. In fact, now, we are complicit. My tax dollars are going to help rescue Kinder Morgan from this project and have it ongoing,” she said.

    1. You can’t get everything you want. Your tax dollars also go to the healthcare of people who don’t look after your own health and many other things. Lots of people, including a whole industry would be saying the same thing if it went the other way around, and it has on two other major pipeline projects and no one pouted like babies about it, breaking laws to protest. Just because you don’t think it’s right, doesn’t mean your not breaking the law. In some cultures, a woman has no right to say no to sex in wedlock, in ours that is rape. You had a choice, you knew the possible consequences, grow up.
    2. Your tax dollars wouldn’t be needed if the resistance would stand by rule of law, that this was federal jurisdiction and they had made their choice. The resisitance literally gave no other option.
    3. I actually kind of like the part that her tax dollars have to pay for the pipeline.

    This sort of stuff makes me sick. End rant.

    • rebnfl@gmail.com'
      Roberta August 3, 2018 at 2:05 pm #

      JD GROW UP

  6. Malcolm@metcalfe.org'
    BC Green August 1, 2018 at 3:33 pm #

    We may face a crisis -reduce emissions, a lot, and soon. The bad news -one of the biggest sources in Canada is personal vehicles. This pipeline is not going to change emissions much. It may actually reduce them by using a more efficient means of transportation. As for the coast. That too is very important, but tankers have been going almost daily from Alaska to Cherry Point – south of the US border… I have not heard any protests about this.. or all the coal (far worse than oil) that comes from the US and leaves from Roberts Bank… there is a real need here for a little more knowledge. This has turned into an emotional sideshow.

  7. j********@gmail.com'
    JD February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    “We’ve done the political work, we’ve done protesting and none of it has had any affect. In fact, now, we are complicit. My tax dollars are going to help rescue Kinder Morgan from this project and have it ongoing,” she said.

    1. You can’t get everything you want. Your tax dollars also go to the healthcare of people who don’t look after your own health and many other things. Lots of people, including a whole industry would be saying the same thing if it went the other way around, and it has on two other major pipeline projects and no one pouted like babies about it, breaking laws to protest. Just because you don’t think it’s right, doesn’t mean your not breaking the law. In some cultures, a woman has no right to say no to sex in wedlock, in ours that is rape. You had a choice, you knew the possible consequences, grow up.
    2. Your tax dollars wouldn’t be needed if the resistance would stand by rule of law, that this was federal jurisdiction and they had made their choice. The resisitance literally gave no other option.
    3. I actually kind of like the part that her tax dollars have to pay for the pipeline.

    This sort of stuff makes me sick. End rant.

    • r*****@gmail.com'
      Roberta February 20, 2019 at 12:07 am #

      JD GROW UP

  8. m******@metcalfe.org'
    BC Green February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    We may face a crisis -reduce emissions, a lot, and soon. The bad news -one of the biggest sources in Canada is personal vehicles. This pipeline is not going to change emissions much. It may actually reduce them by using a more efficient means of transportation. As for the coast. That too is very important, but tankers have been going almost daily from Alaska to Cherry Point – south of the US border… I have not heard any protests about this.. or all the coal (far worse than oil) that comes from the US and leaves from Roberts Bank… there is a real need here for a little more knowledge. This has turned into an emotional sideshow.

  9. Gervfarm@xplornet.ca'
    Sharon August 1, 2018 at 11:25 am #

    When protesters arrive to protest by means of bikes or horse back instead of their cars or trucks only then will I believe they are truly committed to their cause!

    • rebnfl@gmail.com'
      Roberta August 3, 2018 at 2:06 pm #

      Sharon, you should read more

  10. g*******@xplornet.ca'
    Sharon February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    When protesters arrive to protest by means of bikes or horse back instead of their cars or trucks only then will I believe they are truly committed to their cause!

    • r*****@gmail.com'
      Roberta February 20, 2019 at 12:07 am #

      Sharon, you should read more

  11. d.dreilich@hotmail.ca'
    Darlene Dreilich August 1, 2018 at 2:45 am #

    It is time for all of us to protest the corporate greed that continues to kill our environment and those who live in it. Do the corporate kings not think about where their great grandkids will enjoy nature? Will those kids enjoy flipping dollar bills around in the wind vs watching birds and bees fly above the trees next to blue stream where fish are jumping in the water.

  12. d*********@hotmail.ca'
    Darlene Dreilich February 19, 2019 at 9:31 pm #

    It is time for all of us to protest the corporate greed that continues to kill our environment and those who live in it. Do the corporate kings not think about where their great grandkids will enjoy nature? Will those kids enjoy flipping dollar bills around in the wind vs watching birds and bees fly above the trees next to blue stream where fish are jumping in the water.