SOURCE: Metlakatla, Gitxaala, Kitselas, and Kitsumkalum First Nations

February 12, 2016 12:09 ET

Tsimshian Leaders to Carefully Review CEAA Findings and Develop Strong Conditions

PRINCE RUPERT, BC--(Marketwired - February 12, 2016) -  The finding by the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA) that the Pacific Northwest LNG project will not lead to significant adverse impacts on the Skeena salmon fishery is welcomed and will be carefully reviewed, said Tsimshian Chiefs representing Metlakatla, Gitxaala, Kitselas, and Kitsumkalum First Nations. 

The Chiefs will bring forward strong conditions for the project to provide full confidence that the environment will be properly monitored and protected.

Quotes:

Chief Harold Leighton (Metlakatla):
"We strongly advocated for additional research, particularly 3-D modeling, to understand the impacts of Pacific Northwest LNG's project on Flora Bank. This work has been completed, independently reviewed by our environmental teams and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency (CEAA). We will review CEAA's scientific findings and develop our conditions that give us full confidence that salmon fishery is protected."

Chief Cliff White (Gitxaala):
"We are very proud of the work undertaken by our environmental teams. Not only has each of our First Nations' teams undertaken extensive analysis, we have pulled together to work collaboratively to respond to this massive project. CEAA's findings reflect the work we have undertaken and the independent research we have commissioned. We expect to be very involved in monitoring all aspects of this project."

Chief Don Roberts (Kitsumkalum):
"We have gone to great lengths to address environmental concerns and have ensured that an extraordinary amount of scientific work has taken place. As we review CEAA's findings and have the assurance that the project will not impact the Skeena fishery, it enables us to consider social and economic benefits for our members, like training for our younger generation."

Chief Joe Bevan (Kitselas):
"All of our leaders and people have been weighing the benefits against the potential impacts through multiple public meetings. We are encouraged that the proponent has undertaken significant additional work to address concerns and that the independent scientists at CEAA have validated this work."

Background on community legacies:

As environmental due diligence continues, Metlakatla, Gitxaala, Kitselas and Kitsumkalum are working to ensure that, if the project proceeds, there would be substantial legacies benefiting the members of Tsimshian communities.

  • Stewardship - The LNG Environmental Stewardship Initiative (LNG ESI) is a partnership between First Nations and the Province. The partners are working together to develop stewardship projects and create an environmental legacy from the development of LNG.
  • Employment - First Nations have been working together as part of the Tsimshian Alliance Employment, Training & Education Roundtable to identify common interests and coordinate collective solutions to employment and training for Tsimshian people.
  • Procurement - The proposed $11-billion Pacific Northwest LNG project, along with other proposed industrial projects, present opportunities for First Nation-owned businesses to meaningfully participate.
  • Financial Benefits - The Pacific Northwest LNG project, along with other proposed industrial projects, provides the opportunity to create long-term legacies supporting community wellness and environmental initiatives, as defined by each First Nation.

Contact Information

  • Metlakatla
    Shaun Thomas
    Communications
    (778) 629-1004

    Gitxaala
    Chief Cliff White
    (778) 884-1392

    Kitselas
    Chief Joe Bevan
    (250) 635-5084

    Kitsumkalum
    Chief Don Roberts
    (250) 635-5000