Breaking: Enbridge is hitting pause on its Westcoast Connector mega-pipeline

Kai Nagata, Dogwood
Map of pipeline route from Enbridge's website. Stretch connecting Cyprus to Willow Flats removed in 2022 amendment

Also see Request to Extend Environmental Assessment Certificate for Westcoast Connector Gas Transmission Pipeline Withdrawn

Jun 1, 2023

Big news: Enbridge is hitting pause on its Westcoast Connector mega-pipeline, amid growing opposition to the project.

Indigenous house groups and other residents on the pipeline route are deeply concerned about the impacts on Skeena salmon and local communities. With good reason: Coastal GasLink has cut a swathe of destruction through neighbouring Wet’suwet’en territory

Westcoast Connector is even bigger than Coastal GasLink. It would require thousands of new fracking wells. Exporting that gas as LNG would unlock gigatons of dangerous methane and CO2 emissions, amid unprecedented global heating.

Enbridge’s project certificate expires next year. The company demanded an emergency extension from the B.C. government. We were expecting a decision this month from environment minister George Heyman. But at the last minute, Enbridge pulled the plug

“After significant consideration, WCGT has decided to withdraw the Application,” the company wrote in a letter to Heyman posted yesterday. “We still continue to work with stakeholders and Indigenous groups with respect to the development of the Project.”

Enbridge got cold feet. And credit for that lies partly with you.

5,629 Dogwood supporters sent letters to environment minister George Heyman opposing the permit extension for Enbridge. So did grassroots groups throughout the Skeena watershed, hereditary chiefs of the Gitxsan and Gitanyow nations, and allies across the province.

A horde of dancing zombies even swarmed minister Heyman’s office, urging him to let this undead pipeline finally expire. The public pressure worked. Now Enbridge has to come up with a new strategy.

CEO Greg Ebel runs the company from Houston, Texas (where he pays no income tax). Ebel likes to lecture Canadians about building more pipelines, claiming that fracking for methane gas will save the planet. That’s a lie.

“It’s still early days,” Ebel told the Globe and Mail this week. “We’ve got some proposals to extend the permits and I would hope those are realized in due course and positively.”[1]

We’ll keep an eye on Westcoast Connector, and continue to monitor the appalling damage inflicted by Coastal GasLink and the Trans Mountain pipeline as they hoover up public money and destroy salmon habitat. But for today, we’re calling this a win.

Thanks for standing strong,


P.S. It was never going to be smooth sailing for Enbridge, the company that alienated British Columbians 10 years ago with its Northern Gateway pipeline and oil tanker proposal. Enbridge ran into unexpected resistance to the Westcoast Connector pipeline – but they have money, lawyers and lobbyists dedicated to pushing this through. We’ll keep you posted.


[Top: Map of pipeline route from Enbridge's website. Stretch connecting Cyprus to Willow Flats removed in 2022 amendment from ]