British Columbia

Canoes, kayaks take to water around Trans Mountain's marine terminal

Paddlers in canoes and kayaks headed toward Trans Mountain's Westridge Marine Terminal on Saturday to attend an Indigenous ceremony to protect the water.

Greenpeace boats join groups calling for protection of water from spills

Dozens of people gathered Saturday to participate in an Indigenous-led ceremony aimed at protecting the water surroundings Trans Mountain's Westridge Marine Terminal in Burnaby, B.C. (Deborah Goble, CBC News)

Canoers and kayakers gathered on Burrard Inlet Saturday morning to participate in an Indigenous-led ceremony aimed at protecting the water surrounding Trans Mountain's Westridge Marine Terminal in Burnaby, B.C. 

Dozens of boats launched from North Vancouver's Cates Park, where supporters watched from the beach. 

Will George, a Coast Salish member, said the water ceremony involved prayers, songs and traditional medicines. 

A group of people were hanging beneath the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge earlier this month in a demonstration against the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion. (Chantelle Bellrichard/CBC)

"This is not a protest in any way. It's a ceremony," George said. "We've invited all these lovely people to witness and now they can go home and share with their families what happened here today."

George was arrested last week after he dangled 40 hours in a hammock beneath the Second Narrows bridge in opposition to Kinder Morgan's Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.

Greenpeace attended Saturday's event to show its resistance to the Trans Mountain pipeline expansion and the increase in oil tanker traffic it would bring.

"It's less of a protest and more of a recognition of what needs to be saved," said Charles Latimer, spokesperson for Greenpeace Canada. "We're here to stand by the communities that are on the front lines of this." 

With files by Deborah Goble

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