Protests in support of the Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs earlier this month in Kelowna. (Michael Rodriguez - Capital News)

Coastal GasLink agrees to two-day pause of pipeline construction in Morice River area

Work will stop once Wet’suwet’en hereditary chiefs begin talks with province and feds

Coastal GasLink (CGL) has agreed to a two-day pause on its pre-construction of the natural gas pipeline in the Morice River area. The move allows talks to begin between the Wet’suwet’en hereditary and provincial and federal governments.

The talks come amid continuing protests and road and rail blockades across the country. The protests have been ongoing since early February in opposition to CGL and its 670-kilometre natural gas pipeline being built through Wet’suwet’en traditional lands.

The temporary withdrawal of RCMP and CGL employees from the Morice River area was a key condition for the hereditary chiefs to enter talks with the provincial and federal of governments.

The RCMP said earlier today they also will cease patrols of the area during talks.

READ MORE: RCMP cease patrols on Morice West Service Road

CGL will will pause its work on commencement of talks expected later today.

“We fully support the efforts of all parties and are committed to finding a peaceful resolution to the current issues,” reads a statement on the company’s website.

CGL stated pipeline construction in the Morice River area has an extremely limited schedule that must work around an ungulate winter range, migratory bird restrictions and periods of heavy snow.

“However, Coastal GasLink recognizes the importance of dialogue in solving the issues of the Hereditary Chiefs and will provide time for dialogue to occur by temporarily pausing construction in the Morice River area.”

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