Eagle Eye Digest: James Bay Cree to“unlock” value in private homes, Top court halts Taseko drilling, again…and more

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Read on for updates on Indigenous funding programs, precedent setting impact benefit and resource management agreements, and stories of prosperity, jurisdiction and stewardship in action. 

 

Indigenous Jurisdiction

Three oilsands companies surrender land for new Alberta park to be co-managed with First Nations

Teck, Cenovus, and Imperial are voluntarily giving up oil sands mining leases on the lands that make up the newly established Kitaskino Nuwenëné Wildland Provincial Park. The park will be closed to forestry and new energy project developments, and will help buffer Canada’s endangered Wood Buffalo National Park from industrial encroachment. It is being heralded as a step towards the creation of more protected areas to offset decades of major hydro and oilsands operations.

 

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B.C.’s top court halts Taseko’s exploratory drilling, again: An injunction is granted while Supreme Court decides whether to hear Tsilhqot’in National Government appeal

Taseko Mines Ltd.’s permit for an exploratory drilling program in the Teẑtan Biny (Fish Lake) area is on hold once again after the B.C. Court of Appeal granted an injunction Monday, April 1 to the Tsilhqot’in National Government (TNG). The injunction comes as the Supreme Court of Canada decides whether to hear the TNG’s appeal of the B.C. government’s decision to approve the drilling. On March 22, the TNG filed the appeal, arguing the area in which the permit had been issued for is a site of proven Aboriginal rights to hunt, fish and trap and adjacent to an area of proven and recognized Aboriginal title.

 

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Indigenous Prosperity

James Bay Cree move to 'unlock' value in private homes

The Cree Nation Government recently passed a resolution unanimously to remove what it calls a "systemic barrier" to unlocking the true value in private homes in Cree communities. The resolution sets in motion changes to the Cree Governance Agreement to remove the 75-year limit on land leases and allow Cree families to build up equity in their homes and unlock the value of homes for Cree private home owners. 

 

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Nishnawbe Aski Nation (NAN) and Ryerson Announce Housing Partnership

NAN and Ryerson University recently announced a partnership to meet community-defined needs and support self-determination in the development of housing systems for NAN First Nations. This partnership is contributing to the development of NAN’s housing strategy, with an ultimate goal of addressing housing challenges in NAN territory. “Housing is a universal human right, but most of our communities suffer from severe overcrowding. We are pleased to partner with Ryerson,” said NAN Grand Chief Alvin Fiddler.

 

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New report gives thumbs up to Indigenous employment in Nunavut mines

A new report from the Conference Board of Canada says employers looking to hire and keep northern Indigenous employees could learn from a Canadian gold mining company, Agnico Eagle Mines.

The study, Working Together: Indigenous Recruitment and Retentionwas put together by researchers with the board's centre for the North. The report identifies persistent challenges that employers and Indigenous employees continue to face and highlights best practices to help employers develop effective recruitment and retention strategies suitable for Canada’s Northern and remote regions.

 

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Indigenous Stewardship

Trappers in Robinson Huron treaty area want aerial herbicide spraying to end

Traditional Ecological Knowledge (TEK) Elders from Robinson Huron Treaty area First Nations are working to get some attention on the impacts of glyphosate as a vegetation management spray in the forestry industry. It has become common to use the chemical herbicide to kill off plants that will compete with newly planted seedlings in areas that have been clear cut. But the TEK Elders and some trappers in the Robinson Huron Treaty area say they are seeing declines in animal numbers, which they attribute to glyphosate herbicide. In addition, the World Health Organization has acknowledged it could be a carcinogenic substance, with about 10,000 active lawsuits in the US related to its link to lymphoma.

 

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The Success of Spirit Bear Lodge: How a Remote, Community-led Business Became a Global Model for Ecotourism

For many years, Kitasoo/Xai’xais elders rarely spoke of the Spirit Bear for fear it would be hunted into extinction if word spread of its existence. Yet today, the bear is globally recognized and just the opposite has happened: tourists travel from across the globe for a chance to glimpse the animal. The celebrity of the creature parallels, and is in large part due to, the success of the Spirit Bear Lodge.  Like the bear whose image adorns its logo, the lodge has become known worldwide. Over the last two decades, Spirit Bear Lodge has helped strengthen economic, conservation, and cultural well-being in the community of Klemtu at the heart of Kitasoo/Xai’xais territory.

 

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About Us: Shared Value Solutions

We are a Canadian B Corp, and we assist Indigenous communities with support throughout regulatory processes surrounding major development projects like mines, hydroelectric facilities, transmission lines, highway expansions, oil and gas pipelines, natural resource transport applications and nuclear power. 

 

We have deep context and experience behind the recommendations we provide, having worked for our clients on almost every major project in Canada over the last 10 years. For us, it’s all about building long-term relationships with our clients. We want to get to know you and what you want to do so we can help you move your plans forward. 

 

 

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