During his campaign, Trudeau emphasized his condemnation of the Northern Gateway pipeline, which would have transported tar sands oil to the B.C. coast. But activists still lobbied Trudeau to take a tougher position on pipelines after his party ousted Harper’s Conservatives in October, as the young prime minister’s stance was not entirely clear.

Trudeau’s did announce tougher environmental reviews for the projects in December, but his promises appeared to lack teeth when a federal audit unconvered “systematic failures” within the country’s National Energy Board that conducts the pipeline approval process.

The prime minister’s talk in Vancouver this week marked a shift from the grand promises made in Paris: “The choice between pipelines and wind turbines is a false one,” Trudeau argued, according to the Vancouver Sun. “We need both to reach our goal.”

After his talk, the National Observer reported, Trudeau refused to answer reporters’ questions about the growth in tar sands mining that would inevitably be fueled by the construction of new pipelines.

A Ricochet editorial charged Thursday:

Trudeau was also criticized by First Nations on Wednesday, as aboriginal leaders stormed out of a climate meeting with the prime minister after it “fell to shambles,” according to the Aboriginal Peoples Television Network (APTN). Athabasca Chipewyan First Nation chief Allan Adam lamented that “the meeting didn’t include any talks of taking care of mother earth,” APTN reported, and “instead the focus was placed on economic development and transitioning to a green economy.”

On Thursday, the prime minister meets with Canada’s premiers to create a national climate plan for the country. A campaign manager for 350.org argued that a 100% renewable energy economy that honors Indigenous rights is possible for Canada, but “only if the government listen to people, not pipeline companies and big polluters.”

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