BC Hydro files civil claim against Rocky Mountain Fort protesters

Jonny Wakefield
Site C opponents Christy Jordan-Fenton and Yvonne Tupper wait for Saulteau Security employees to pass during a patrol near their encampment at Rocky Mountain Fort earlier this month.   Photo By Jonny Wakefield

BC Hydro is taking legal action against campers blocking Site C dam construction on the south bank of the Peace River. 

The Crown utility filed a civil claim in B.C. Supreme Court Tuesday against a number of individuals camped at the Rocky Mountain Fort.

"On Tuesday of this week, we filed a civil claim in relation to a small number of individuals who have been preventing contractors from safely undertaking some clearing work on the south bank of the Site C dam site," BC Hydro CEO Jessica McDonald told the Alaska Highway News Wednesday.

"It is unfortunate that we need to take legal steps, but we need to consider the interests of our customers if the project schedule and costs are affected."

The camp, upstream from the Moberly River at the site of an 18th-century fur trade fort, has been preventing logging work for more than 20 days. Campers there say they want work stopped until First Nations' court challenges against the dam are settled. Around 10 people are living in heated camp shacks there, both of which were flown in by helicopter. 

The protest has earned kudos—as well as a higher profile—from environmentalist David Suzuki, as well as Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs Grand Chief Stewart Phillip.