Net Zero: Coastal GasLink construction resumes after blockades

Welcome to Net Zero, your daily industry brief on clean energy and Canadian-resource politics.

The Lead

Coastal GasLink has resumed the construction of a pipeline in northern B.C. that had been blockaded for several weeks in a dispute over energy pipelines and Indigenous land rights.

On Tuesday, TC Energy said it had confirmed that “opposition groups had departed” from a forest service road and a Coastal GasLink drill site on the Morice River.

“Work is safely resuming along the Coastal GasLink project route after the holiday break.”

On Dec. 19, 2021, a group of land defenders returned to a protest camp to reoccupy the remote area on Wet’suwet’en traditional territory, near Houston B.C., about 1,000 kilometres northeast of Vancouver. Their move to obstruct the construction of the natural gas pipeline came only one month after the high-profile arrests of numerous people blockading the project.

The Coastal GasLink pipeline would carry natural gas hydraulically fractured in northeastern B.C along a 670 kilometre route to a $40 billion export terminal on the Pacific coast. According to TC Energy, the project is 60 per cent complete. CBC News has more details.


In response to the European Union’s (EU) proposal to label some gas and nuclear power as green, the Czech Republic is hoping to amend some of the conditions included in the plan.

“Our main task now is to reach out to like-minded EU member states and try … to negotiate better conditions that will more reflect our interests,” Czech Industry Minister Jozef Sikela said on Tuesday, without elaborating on those conditions. Reuters has more.

Increased deforestation has caused scientists in Brazil to sound the alarm on the state of the Cerrado, one of the world’s most species-rich savannahs, which also works as a major carbon sink that helps to stave off climate change. Reuters also has that story.

New research suggests that beavers are increasingly moving north into previously inhospitable territory as the Arctic tundra continues to heat up due to the climate crisis. The Guardian has the full story.

Meanwhile, American author Jeff Goodell says that more people should be paying attention to the fate of Antarctica’s Thwaites Glacier and its potential impact on sea levels.

“This is one of these what scientists call tipping points in the climate system that can really change our lives and how we think about our world and the world we live in, in a very fundamental way,” Goodell said earlier this week. CBC Radio has that story.

On Wednesday morning at 9:21 a.m., West Texas Intermediate was trading at US$77.63 and Brent Crude was going for US$80.72.

In Canada

Younes Alila, a professor in the department of forest resources management at the University of British Columbia, claims that climate change and continued logging in B.C. watersheds are contributing to the degradation of Pacific salmon habitat. Alila said that, before logging, the forest canopy used to collect rainfall and shade snowpack, slowing down the springtime melt. The Canadian Press has more details.

The federal government has yet to set a date for when Finance Canada will release a report on how much climate change could cost Ottawa. The publication of a report is required under the Canadian Net-Zero Emissions Accountability Act. iPolitics has that story.

Grande Prairie, Alta., has taken on several new energy projects that look to create local jobs. Among the projects in development include Terrapin Energy’s Alberta No. 1 geothermal site, and $2 billion petrochemical projects to tap into the hydrogen economy by Northern Petrochemical Corporation and Nauticol Energy. Global News has more from Alberta.

Finally, one municipality on Cape Breton island is supporting more research into the offshore wind energy industry. Richmond Country, N.S., has written a letter of support for a Low Carbon Communities Education Grant for more research into the potential fit of offshore wind in the area. The Chronicle Herald has the latest.

Canadian Crude Index was trading at US$64.54 and Western Canadian Select was going for US$64.84 this morning at 9:21 a.m.


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