Those opposed to the Enbridge Northern Gateway Project can participate in a series of public events as a prelude to the official joint review panel hearing at the Sandman Inn in Kelowna on Jan. 28.
The series includes: the premiere of a film about a rain forest expedition, the screening of a documentary on the oilsands and a two-day People's Summit. Details about
public rallies on Jan. 28 have not yet been announced.
The premiere of Reflections: Art for an Oil-Free Coast is 1:30-4:30 p.m. on Saturday at the Alternator Gallery which is located in the Rotary Centre for the Arts on Cawston Avenue. Admission is by donation.
The film focuses on a Raincoast Conservation Foundation expedition "into a stunning and remote landscape, weaving together the artists' work, and their emotional response to a people and a region at risk."
Following the screening, a series of speakers will describe "positive actions reflecting local practices/solutions that are oil-free, energy-efficient and environmentally friendly."
Community organizations will have displays in the RCA.
The documentary, White Water Black Gold, will be shown at 7 p.m. on Jan. 19 in the Okanagan College Theatre on KLO Road.
It is described as "a sober look at the untold costs (to water and people) associated with developing the second largest deposit of oil in the world."
The investigative documentary follows David Lavallee on his three-year journey across Western Canada in search of answers about the activities of the world's thirstiest oil industry: the oilsands.
The mountaineer and hiking guide made many discoveries: new science shows that water resources in an era of climate change will be increasingly scarce (putting this industry at risk); First Nations' people living downstream are contracting bizarre cancers; the upgrading of this oil threatens multiple river systems across Canada; and the tailings ponds containing the waste by-products of the process threaten to befoul the third largest watershed in the world.
The planned pipeline across British Columbia brings fresh threats to this province's rivers and the Pacific Ocean.
The People's Summit, 7-9 p.m. on Jan. 26 at First United Church Hall, corner of Bernard Avenue and Richter Street, will involve four keynote speakers followed by a question-and-answer session. The speakers are Grand Chief Stewart Phillip, Elizabeth May, leader of the Green Party of Canada, Damien Gillis and Rob Fleming
That will be followed on Jan. 27 by workshops and skills training for community resistance 2-5 p.m. at First United. Participants will also discuss long-term strategies leading up to the provincial election in the spring.
The local organizing committee, a coalition of concerned citizens and non-governmental organizations, is also joining opponents in Victoria and Vancouver in the creation of Hope the Whale, an eight-metre whale that will be taken to the Enbridge Northern Gateway hearings. Messages and Sharpie artwork will be displayed on blue drops that surround the whale.