First Nations want role in gas plant environmental process

The Chief of the Fort Nelson First Nation is voicing her frustrations around a proposed gas plant in Treaty 8 territory.

On Wednesday’s Issues and Answers, Chief Kathie Dickie elaborated on an open letter she sent to Premier Campbell, which appeared in the Vancouver Sun last month.

Dickie claims the Fort Nelson First Nation hasn’t had adequate consultation on the Environmental Assessment (EA) for the proposed Cabin Gas Plant.

The facility would be owned and operated by EnCana and a consortium of seven other oil companies.

Chief Dickie says the Cabin Gas Plant is a multi-billion-dollar project designed to open up B.C.’s Horn River Basin to shale gas development.

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Chief Dickie also complains that, although EnCana funded an independent study, conducted by the First Nation, the results of the study have so far been ignored by the EA office.

She claims at this point, the proposal violates the Treaty 8 rights of the First Nation people. She also says the EA timeline is aggressive and feels rushed.

Dickie stresses the First Nation is willing to work with the Province, to develop the gas plant into a environmentally sustainable facility.

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She adds Premier Campbell has been recognized on the world stage for B.C.’s environmental initiatives. She says she wants to see the Premier live up to his reputation and give the Fort Nelson First Nation a bigger role in the Environmental Assessment process.

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