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Court orders Coastal GasLink project opponents to clear construction site

Coastal Gaslink Pipeline Ltd. through a court order gave project opponents 72 hours to clear the way to a construction site of its C$6.6 billion natural gas pipeline project and prohibited them from blocking access to the area.

The Jan. 7 order from the Supreme Court of British Columbia addressed people who have been "occupying, obstructing, blocking, physically impeding or delaying access" to the area in and around the Morice River Bridge. The court called for the removal of any blockage to the construction area that the TC Energy Corp. subsidiary is allowed to use.

If the obstructions are not removed within 72 hours, Coastal GasLink has the right to remove them, according to the order.

A British Columbia First Nation on Jan. 4 issued an eviction notice to TC Energy workers. The company also said its personnel found trees felled across a logging road that had provided access to the site, making it unusable.

TC Energy had said it will delay restarting construction on a section of the pipeline project pending negotiations with First Nations groups involved in the eviction. The Coastal GasLink project will connect shale gas fields in British Columbia to the Royal Dutch Shell PLC-backed LNG Canada Development Inc. terminal project on the Pacific Coast.