Kinder Morgan Files Multi-Million-Dollar Suit Against Pipeline Protesters
The defendants in a multi-million-dollar lawsuit filed late last month by Texas-based Kinder Morgan include a biochemistry professor from Simon Fraser University, an SFU administrative worker, and a retired SFU sociology prof, the Observer reports.
And from coverage in the Vancouver Sun, it almost seems that Kinder Morgan’s lawyer is pushing for conviction by arguing that it’s “not only intimidation, but actually an assault” to make angry faces while trying to stop an oil and gas company from illegally cutting down trees in a city-owned conservation area in Burnaby, BC.
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Kinder Morgan is accusing five protesters of obstructing work along the pipeline route, but “I don’t think they could’ve bought themselves worse publicity,” biochemist Lynne Quarmby told the Observer. “I still believe in justice and democracy. That’s why I was so shocked by this. I didn’t think such a thing could happen in our country.”
When the Observer story ran on Facebook, an associated link pointed to a 2013 summary of a Wall Street investment report that described Kinder Morgan as “another Enron-style house of cards in waiting.” The report pointed to the company’s “high-level business strategy…to starve its pipelines and related infrastructure of routine maintenance spending,” campaigner Ben West wrote on Huffington Post, just as the company sought approval of its proposed Trans Mountain pipeline expansion.