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Federal Labour Minister Seamus O’Regan is stepping in to the 12-day-old strike that has shut down all BC ports, including Vancouver — the busiest port in Canada. O’Regan says in a statement issued last night that “the difference between the employer’s and the union’s positions is not sufficient to justify a continued work stoppage.” He says the two sides have a “good deal within reach, ”so he has asked the federal mediator to send him a written recommendation for a settlement within 24 hours. O’Regan says the proposal will then be forwarded to the International Longshore and Warehouse Union and the B-C Maritime Employers Association and they will have one day to decide whether or not to ratify.

As Canada’s minister of labour enters the dispute between B-C’s dock workers and their employer, Premier David Eby has already said that any settlement to resolve disruptions at the ports must be long-term. Eby made the comments yesterday at the national premier’s conference in Winnipeg, before Labour Minister Seamus O’Regan ordered the mediator in the port strike to send him recommendations to resolve the nearly two-week walkout. Speaking yesterday, Eby also said his colleagues are unified in calling for an end to the dispute and O’Regan’s statement, issued last night, supports the sentiment. The statement says the relationship between port employers and longshore workers is important to Canada’s national interest and the work stoppage “cannot be allowed to persist” and risk “further damage” to that relationship.

A wildfire continues to burn west of Whitehorse leading to 155 properties being put under evacuation alert. Community Services Minister Richard Mostyn say Yukoners should follow the fire bans in place across the territory and have a 72-hour emergency kit prepared. He is urging all residents to keep themselves informed and to stay calm. The Yukon’s wildfire website shows 17 fires burning in the territory.

BC’s transportation ministry says crews will start rock scaling along the hillside that has been affected by the wildfire along Highway 4 on Vancouver Island. It says the work is critical in ensuring the long-term safety of the corridor and that a  geotechnical assessment of the bluff found that rock scaling would be required before the highway could be reopened to two-way traffic at Cameron Lake Bluffs. The ministry says the work will involve removing loose rocks above the highway. To keep travellers safe, it says the road will be closed from 9 a.m. until 5 p.m. Monday to Friday until mid August, with a two-hour daily opening from 11:30 a.m. to 1:30 p.m.

Industry experts say Canadian liquefied natural gas projects looking to fill gaps in the global market left by the absence of Russian gas may run into more challenging conditions than expected. Officials from the LNG industry at an industry conference in Vancouver say the consensus among economists is that the gas shortage in Europe caused by the Ukraine war is unlikely to last beyond 10 years, while the rise of renewables will cut into demand from 2030 onward. But Malaysian energy giant Petronas C-E-O Muhammad Taufik says there will be markets in Asia who prefer Canada’s high environmental standards when choosing where to buy natural gas. Petronas has a 25 per cent stake in L-N-G Canada, the 40-billion-dollar export facility that is currently about 85 per cent complete in Kitimat, BC.

Mounties say a hiker from the United States is dead after falling from British Columbia’s Black Tusk. Sea to Sky RCMP identified the woman as Nicole Killian from Richmond, Vermont. Police, paramedics and Whistler Search and Rescue responded to reports she had fallen and was seriously injured, but say she sadly she died shortly after. Police say they, along with the B-C Coroners Service and BC Parks, are working to determine what happened and are asking anyone with information to come forward.