rabble blogs are the personal pages of some of Canada's most insightful progressive activists and commentators. All opinions belong to the writer; however, writers are expected to adhere to our guidelines. We welcome new bloggers -- contact us for details.

Opposition to Energy East pipeline on the rise in Quebec

Please chip in to support rabble's election 2019 coverage. Support rabble.ca today for as little as $1 per month!

There is mounting opposition to TransCanada's proposed Energy East pipeline across the country.

Two of the most recent (and ongoing) examples are in Quebec.

A number of environmental groups in the province declared 'victory' recently when TransCanada agreed to put a hold on exploratory drilling until it received a provincial permit. Drilling was rumoured to start in mere days.

It just so happens that the massive export terminal they want to build in Cacouna, Quebec is right in the middle of an at-risk beluga habitat. Yes, it's as terrible an idea as it sounds -- I sincerely hope we never have to witness belugas covered in diluted bitumen.  

In addition to the clear reasons why we need to protect the habitat of at-risk species, belugas are also a key part of local culture, key to tourism and the local economy.

TransCanada made this concession as a result of several Quebec environmental groups filing an injunction with the Quebec Superior Court. Certainly, the fight won't stop here. The Council of Canadians continues to oppose this port and will look at ways to further support opposition to it and continued protection for the beluga whale habitat.

Cacouna was also the starting point of the People's March for Mother Earth. It began on the Defend our Climate day of action, May 10, starting a journey spanning 700 kilometres from Cacouna to Kanehsatà:ke on June 14.

The march is following the path of TransCanada's Energy East and Enbridge's Line 9 tar sands pipelines. The objective of the march is "to inform and support citizen mobilizations against the arrival of tarsands pipelines and fossil fuel exploitation projects in Quebec. The marchers will stop every evening to meet with communities through the medium of participative theater and discussion of the issues which directly touch them."

The march has seen anywhere between 30 to hundreds of people joining the Cacouna walkers for the day's journey. Rallies in communities along the path have drawn large crowds. They are reporting people along the path are already very concerned and, many are opposed to the project.

You can follow the march's progress (they arrived in Trois Rivieres this week) on their website  and get daily updates on Facebook.

I suspect we will see more journeys crop up along the pipeline path in coming months.

This past February saw Thunder Bay Council of Canadians members join a 20-kilometre snowshoe and cross country ski trek along the route in Northern Ontario.

There is also the 'Vulnerable Watersheds' project for which biologist Dr. Frederick W. Schueler and Aleta Karstad are seeking support. The plan is to assess the characteristics of rivers and streams along the Energy East path, surveying the organisms of the waterways and painting places where the pipeline crosses.

Thank you for reading this story…

More people are reading rabble.ca than ever and unlike many news organizations, we have never put up a paywall – at rabble we’ve always believed in making our reporting and analysis free to all, while striving to make it sustainable as well. Media isn’t free to produce. rabble’s total budget is likely less than what big corporate media spend on photocopying (we kid you not!) and we do not have any major foundation, sponsor or angel investor. Our main supporters are people and organizations -- like you. This is why we need your help. You are what keep us sustainable.

rabble.ca has staked its existence on you. We live or die on community support -- your support! We get hundreds of thousands of visitors and we believe in them. We believe in you. We believe people will put in what they can for the greater good. We call that sustainable.

So what is the easy answer for us? Depend on a community of visitors who care passionately about media that amplifies the voices of people struggling for change and justice. It really is that simple. When the people who visit rabble care enough to contribute a bit then it works for everyone.

And so we’re asking you if you could make a donation, right now, to help us carry forward on our mission. Make a donation today.


We welcome your comments! rabble.ca embraces a pro-human rights, pro-feminist, anti-racist, queer-positive, anti-imperialist and pro-labour stance, and encourages discussions which develop progressive thought. Our full comment policy can be found here. Learn more about Disqus on rabble.ca and your privacy here. Please keep in mind:


  • Tell the truth and avoid rumours.
  • Add context and background.
  • Report typos and logical fallacies.
  • Be respectful.
  • Respect copyright - link to articles.
  • Stay focused. Bring in-depth commentary to our discussion forum, babble.


  • Use oppressive/offensive language.
  • Libel or defame.
  • Bully or troll.
  • Post spam.
  • Engage trolls. Flag suspect activity instead.