Indigenous Groups Inching Closer To Ownership of Trans Mountain Pipeline

The Trans Mountain pipeline is getting closer to being owned by multiple Indigenous groups.

Federal Finance Minister Bill Morneau met with the ‘Iron Coalition’ earlier this year to discuss the project moving forward.

The group is made up of different First Nation and Métis leaders including President of the McKay Métis Nation Ron Quintal.

He tells Mix News it seems only right that groups in Wood Buffalo would be part owners.

“It’s very important that Métis groups like the Fort McKay Métis Nation, as well as our sister communities throughout Wood Buffalo, have the opportunity to play a part in investment because if the resources are going to come from our territory then we want to be able to ensure that if there’s Indigenous ownership and equity opportunities that we are taking advantage of that.”

Quintal, who wasn’t able to attend the meeting with Morneau, notes the message from the federal government continues to be they want TMX owned by Indigenous groups.

He says the coalition has put a call out to more communities to be a part of the project.

“It’s not just localized to Wood Buffalo, we actually put out a call (on Tuesday) to other Métis communities in Alberta who want to potentially play a part in the coalition and we’re making it very clear to them that this is an opportunity for their communities to achieve some form of sustainability.”

It’s too early to tell when a deal could be reached with the federal government.

As for now, Quintal notes the government wants the coalition and other interested groups to get organized.

“At this point, it’s getting our ducks in a row and then the anticipation is that the ownership stake won’t be discussed by the government until after the fall election.”

The federal government is expected to make a final call on the project on June 18.

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