B.C., Treaty 8 First Nations build path forward together

January 20, 2023 at 2:22 pm  BC, News, Politics

Nathan Cullen, Minister of Water, Land and Resource Stewardship –

“These agreements are about righting past wrongs and upholding the legally protected Treaty Rights of Treaty 8 Nations in B.C. We need to come together to heal and restore the land, demonstrating how a new way of working in partnership to steward land and resources can not only be possible, but also prosperous for all. This is important work for all of us. It’s about leaving the land in a good way for future generations.”

Murray Rankin, Minster of Indigenous Relations and Reconciliation –

“Our government is committed to upholding our obligations under Treaty 8. The consensus we’ve reached today with Fort Nelson, Saulteau, Halfway River and Doig River First Nations sets us on a path toward a future where Treaty 8 First Nations members can meaningfully exercise their rights, and where we can work together to build a healthy and prosperous northeastern B.C. for everyone.”

Bruce Ralston, Minister of Forests –

“Fundamental to Treaty 8 Nations is the right to healthy forests and wildlife habitats. Together, we are working on a new approach so that forests and wildlife are restored, protected and better managed now and for generations to come. I am confident that our forests will continue to sustain our communities and I want to thank the Nations for their participation in reaching this agreement and offering their commitment to move forward in partnership.”

George Heyman, Minister of Environment and Climate Change Strategy

“We acknowledge and agree Treaty 8 Nations must be granted full and meaningful exercise of their Treaty Rights and development of their lands must be in accordance with their rights, title and culture. This agreement provides a framework that will address the cumulative impacts of industrial development and will ensure our path forward is based on environmental sustainability as a core guiding principle. Only through true partnership, collaboration and good faith can we advance collective economic solutions that will benefit our climate, environment and communities.”

Leonard Hiebert, chair, Peace River Regional District

“The regional district is confident that this consensus agreement sets a positive path forward based on partner-centred leadership. We are pleased that the Treaty 8 First Nations and the B.C. government have come to this point in the process through collaboration and mutual respect.”

Michael Rose, president and CEO, Tourmaline –

“Tourmaline is pleased with this new framework for oil and gas development that will create significant prosperity for the people and the Province, for Blueberry River First Nations and all the Treaty 8 First Nations of B.C., and for industry. Providing low-emission Canadian natural gas to the world is one of the best things we can do for the global atmosphere and the overall Canadian economy.”

Izwan Ismail, president and CEO, Petronas Energy Canada Ltd.

“Petronas Canada is encouraged that agreements have been reached between the Government of British Columbia and Treaty 8 Nations in an important step toward reconciliation and the management of cumulative impacts. As a global energy leader, we look to B.C.’s world class North Montney basin and LNG Canada as cornerstones of both our global portfolio and B.C.’s important economic and environmental opportunity to deliver the world’s lowest-emission LNG. With this important agreement in place, our collaborative relationship with Treaty 8 Nations and our commitment to sustainable development, including land restoration, continues. It is our expectation that the necessary work can now proceed to ensure that the gas Petronas Canada delivers to the LNG Canada project is responsibly produced right here in B.C., benefiting the entire province and country.”

Tristan Goodman, president and CEO, The Explorers and Producers Association of Canada

“The agreement between the British Columbia government and Indigenous communities in northeastern B.C. provides much-needed clarity to move forward with natural gas development. These historic agreements demonstrate a commitment from all parties to reconciliation and the environmentally conscious development of B.C.’s natural resources. British Columbia’s clean and responsibly produced natural gas can support Canada’s climate goals and supply the world with lower carbon, reliable and affordable energy. The agreement offers opportunities for economic prosperity for Indigenous communities and contributes revenues to support provincial priorities, such as health care and affordable housing.”

Lisa Baiton, president and CEO, Canadian Association of Petroleum Producers (CAPP)

Indigenous partnerships and participation are integral to the success of the natural gas and oil industry in British Columbia. CAPP and our members appreciate the diligent efforts of the Province of B.C. and the Doig River, Halfway River, Fort Nelson and Saulteau First Nations to reach this detailed agreement. This, along with the Blueberry River First Nations agreement, is a positive step forward. We are looking forward to gaining a better understanding of the details within the agreements which we believe can chart a path forward that enables the responsible development of B.C.’s rich natural resources in a way that ensures mutual benefits for industry, Indigenous Nations and British Columbians across the province.

Linda Coady, president and CEO, BC Council of Forest Industries (COFI)

“As this agreement is implemented and more details made known, COFI will work with our members to support a path forward that reflects our recognition of Indigenous rights and our commitment to supporting sustainable forestry, people and communities. More broadly, and as important conversations about the future of forestry continue to take place across the province, we will keep collaborating with partners to further maximize the role a strong and sustainable forest industry can play in advancing reconciliation, fighting climate change and delivering good jobs for British Columbians today and into the future.”

Terry Anderson, president and chief executive officer, ARC Resources Ltd. 

“We are pleased that the Government of British Columbia and the Treaty 8 First Nations have come to an agreement. Resolution of this matter is an important step forward in the continued development of the region’s valuable natural resources. We look forward to continuing to work proactively and collaboratively with the Indigenous communities near our areas of operation to responsibly develop the energy the world needs.”

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