Tag Archives: LNG terminal

Hereditary Chiefs Of Lelu Island Responded To Port Authority

Photo: Council of Canadians

Photo: Council of Canadians

The hereditary chiefs of Lelu Island have responded to a Prince Rupert Port Authority demand they halt protest camp construction.

Hereditary chiefs, Simoyget Yahaan (Donnie Wesley) and Gwishawaal (Ken Lawson) have officially responded to demands from the Port of Prince Rupert, that occupiers of Lelu Island in protest of the proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG terminal, halt construction activities.

A letter signed by both chiefs is addressed to Prime Minister Justin Trudeau, Justice Minister Jody Wilson-Raybould, Transport Minister Marc Garneau, and New Democrat Skeena-Bulkley Valley MP Nathan Cullen.

Wesley and Lawson say, “given the seriousness of issues at hand,” they are choosing not to directly reply to the Port Authority’s demands – instead asking the federal government if it agrees with the cease and desist letter.

The letter also asks Trudeau, “specifically do you support the actions of the Prince Rupert Port Authority, acting on behalf of  your government, to try to remove a peaceful camp on Lelu Island under the threat of legal action and the potential pursuit of legal costs should we not comply?”

Wesley and Lawson also ask the Prime Minister if the port’s demands are, “an adequate and/or legally satisfactory execution of (the) government’s duty to consult and accommodate with Aboriginal people in Canada?”

Since last summer, a group of protestors have been occupying the island and have begun constructing a protest camp.

In the original news release on Monday morning, President and C-E-O Don Krusel says the port is exercising its right as administrator of federal crown lands on Lelu, and is instructing the protestors to stop construction activities.

The release says the port has reserved the right to require that existing structures be dismantled and all contents be removed from the island.

The port’s Commuications Manager Michael Gurney says the structures pose a risk of damage to the proposed project as well as raising safety concernes.

“The letter that was delivered this morning to the individuals on the island and to the organizers specifically requests that they seize construction activities on the island, it also reserves the right of the Port Authority to request in the future that they disassemble or remove the structures that are currently standing on the island and remove the materials from the island as well,” added Gurney.


Voting Down LNG Terminal Is Not An Economic Loss: Tsawwassen First Nation

The Tsawwassen First Nation Chief Bryce Williams (Nov 16/15) (Shannon Brennan, NEWS 1130 photo)

The Tsawwassen First Nation Chief Bryce Williams (Nov 16/15) (Shannon Brennan, NEWS 1130 photo)

by Treena Wood (NEWS 1130)

Chief Bryce Williams says decision against LNG terminal is final

The chief of the Tsawwassen First Nation will not re-open the discussion of a liquefied natural gas terminal on its property after the band membership voted down the idea last night.

The “no” vote won out by a few percentage points and only about half the first nation voted. But Chief Bryce Williams, who had recommended acceptance, says the decision is final.

“For me, the people have already spoken and as long as I’m in leadership I won’t be revisiting this concept.”

Williams says even with this result, he’s not all that disappointed. “I was somewhat on the fence, and leaving the decision up to the members, I think, was the best choice and the best approach to take.”

The band’s chief administrative officer, Tom McCarthy, says the mega-mall going on the first nations’ property plus the band’s decision to open up even more land for development means the loss of the plant won’t have much of a financial impact, either.

“To be frank, the LNG facility didn’t offer as many jobs. Logistics-based warehouse activities [will] actually generate more constructions jobs, and long-term operating jobs.”

UBC political scientist David Moscrop says it may be more of a loss in terms of optics for the provincial Liberals, who still don’t have much to show for their billion-dollar plan to grow the industry. He’s sure Christy Clark has a Plan B.

“There aren’t that many options. It might not be ideal for them — it might not be particularly palatable — but there’s got to be something in the works, there always is.”

Moscrop also says this could be a good learning opportunity for both the provincial and federal governments on how they negotiate with first nations.

“You might be able to make better long-term investments through generating better relationships. So there is opportunity in failure, there almost always is.”

The province and FortisBC haven’t commented so far.

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First Nation To Claim Land Title To Block Pacific NorthWest LNG Terminal

Pacific NorthWest LNG’s marine terminal (Credit: Pacific Northwest LNG via Facebook)

Pacific NorthWest LNG’s marine terminal (Credit: Pacific Northwest LNG via Facebook)

The Canadian Press

LELU ISLAND, B.C. — A northern British Columbia First Nation says it is seeking aboriginal title to the land where a Malaysia-led consortium hopes to build a $36-billion liquefied natural gas terminal.

The Lax Kw’alaams First Nation says it will launch an action claiming title to Lelu Island and Flora Bank, where the Pacific NorthWest LNG project would be built.

The nation says if it successfully establishes title, the province would have to seek its consent for massive projects like the one spearheaded by Malaysia’s state-owned Petronas.

Mayor Garry Reece says the Lax Kw’alaams are open to development including the Pacific NorthWest project, but only if an alternate site is found to avoid Flora Bank.

The nation says the area is a critical fisheries habitat located in the estuary of the Skeena River and it is concerned that construction would irreparably harm salmon stocks.

Earlier this spring, Lax Kw’alaams members overwhelmingly rejected a $1.15-billion package from the company and province.

Source: The Vancouver Observer

Native Band In Canada Rejects $1.15 Billion Inducement From Gas Pipeline Builder

Part of the large Alcan aluminum smelting facility in Kitimat, British Columbia, Canada.

Part of the large Alcan aluminum smelting facility in Kitimat, British Columbia, Canada.

By Joel Connelly | seattlepi.com

A native band in northern British Columbia has voted to reject a $1.15 billion (Canadian), 40-year payout from a consortium of Asian and North American energy companies that want to cross its land with a pipeline and build a liquefied natural gas terminal.

The action by the Lax Kw’alaams came after meetings in their village, Price Rupert and Vancouver saw near-unanimous opposition from the 3,600-member Aboriginal First Nation band.

“Not every election has a price tag,” Tamo Campos, a young environmentalist from the B.C. north, wrote on his Facebook page.

Garry Reece, mayor of the band’s village, said in a statement:  “Hopefully the public will recognize that unanimous consensus in communities (and where unanimity is the exception) against a project where those communities are offered in excess of a billion dollars, sends an unequivocal message this is not a money issue:  This is environmental and cultural.”

The group Pacific NorthWest LNG has proposed a $36 billion (Canadian) project that would include a pipeline terminus and liquified natural gas shipment terminal near the Lax Kw’alaams’ remote village.

The company is headed by Malaysia’s state-owned Petronas with other investors that include Shell Oil, Chevron, China Petrochemical Corp, Japan Petroleum Exploration Co. and the Indian Oil Corp.

The British Columbia government has promised and promoted LNG exports as an economic panacea, with 19 proposed projects up and down the B.C. Coast.  Two huge proposed oil export terminals — at Kitimat in northern B.C., and Burnaby, next door to Vancouver — are also under evaluation.

The Pacific NorthWest LNG project has been described as “a significant deal, a serious deal” by John Rustad, B.C.’s aboriginal affairs minister.

B.C. Premier Christy Clark predicted Monday that an agreement between Pacific NorthWest LNG and the Lax Kw’alaams will eventually be worked out.  The Indian band is no stranger to trans-Pacific commerce.  It makes money exporting raw logs to Asia.

But the energy industry’s heavy hand is generating significant backlash in British Columbia.

British Columbia Premier Christy Clark:  She looked like a loser, and won.

The natural gas premier: British Columbia Premier Christy Clark has touted LNG (liquified natural gas) exports as an economic panacea for Canada’s province on the Pacific.

A proposed natural gas pipeline would go directly under the Nisga’a Memorial Lava Bed Park, beneath which 2,000 Nisga’a Band members were entombed by a volcanic eruption more than 250 years ago.

The LNG terminal would be adjacent to the estuaries of the Skeena and Nass rivers, famous salmon streams.  The Nass is a rare example in Canada where the federal government and Aboriginal First Nations have cooperated to rebuild a flourishing fishery.

In southern British Columbia, the proposed expansion of the TransMountain Pipeline, an oil pipeline project proposed by Houston-based Kinder Morgan, could bore through four provincial parks and go under popular Burnaby Mountain Park.

Hundreds of demonstrators were arrested, and then released, in protests last November against Kinder Morgan’s exploratory drilling.

The Lax Kw’alaams have objected to disruption of Flora Bank, an estuary of eel grass vital to the maturation of young salmon before they go out into the ocean.

Pacific NorthWest LNG has offered to build a suspension bridge over the eel grass, and has plied the native band with offers of economic development and jobs.

The Supreme Court of Canada has recently granted Aboriginal First Nations expanded powers over their ancestral hunting, fishing and gathering grounds.

At the same time, however, the Canadian federal government has severely scaled back the environmental review of major energy projects.  Provinces can, according to the high court ruling, exercise power to override native groups’ opposition when vital interests are deemed at stake.

The rejection of the $1.15 billion deal is still a landmark in the Great White North.

“The stern resolve of the people of Lax Kw’alaams is of a piece with their ancients’ history, and in standing up for their rights, they’re making modern history, too,” journalist Ian Gill wrote in The Tyee, a Vancouver-based news web site.