Prime Minister Justin Trudeau and his cabinet will decide Tuesday whether to greenlight the Trans Mountain expansion project, amid political and legal uncertainty for the pipeline the government bought last year for $4.5 billion.
The Liberal government was forced to put the project through a new consultation process after the Federal Court of Appeal quashed past cabinet approvals for the long-delayed project and halted construction last summer.
The court said the government didn't do adequate consultation work with Indigenous peoples before it first approved TMX in November 2016. The court also said the National Energy Board (NEB) did not do enough to study the effects of this project on the marine environment in B.C.'s Lower Mainland.
The NEB did the required environmental review work and conditionally approved the pipeline expansion in February.
Citing the need for more time to finish Indigenous consultations, Natural Resources Minister Amarjeet Sohi punted the decision date to June 18. The government failed to comply with legislated timelines for approving a project after an NEB report.