Concerns of Aboriginal Peoples




Consent
The exploration programmes, not only in the Voisey's Bay area, but throughout much of the Innu lands, have proceeded without the consent of the Innu people ... and the rapid pace has given rise to concerns, fears, and deep resentment among the Innu.

Chief Katie Rich
Utshimassit Band Council

Regulating Impacts
What is the long-term perspective for mining? We seem to be giving away mountains and getting borrow pits in return.
Chief Herb Norwegian, Fort Simpson

Traditional Knowledge
Good baseline research acknowledges the cyclical and variable patterns to the natural world and human societies. A one- or two-season "snapshot" picture of an area is not acceptable. While there are limits to traditional knowledge ... there remains, among the elders and active hunters and fishermen, an in-depth understanding of baseline conditions for many years back.
Chelsey Andersen
Labrador Inuit Association

Regional Baseline Studies
Already the exploration programmes have caused environmental change and communities are experiencing several impacts. The "baseline " is changing as the weeks and months of exploration work pass, making it all that more difficult to establish true conditions prior to impact.
Chief Katie Rich
Utshimassit Band Council

Understanding Aboriginal Culture
The feeling among Innu is that governments and the mining industry fail to understand, and accept, the fundamentals of Innu life and culture.... It is time for governments and industry to stop asking Innu to "move to their side of the table all the time.
Daniel Ashini, Director, Innu Rights and
Environment, Sheshatshui

Social Disruption -- Wildlife Dwindling
Large numbers of transient workers during further exploration and construction of facilities are a threat to the stability of the community. The expectation [is] for escalating levels of social problems.... Wildlife populations are dwindling and ... action is needed now to avert the kinds of crises characterized by the loss of the plains bison and more recently the collapse of the eastern cod fishery and the dwindling salmon stocks on the west coast.
Chief Joe Johnson
Kluane First Nation

Caribou-Environmental Protection
While most of the (Bluenose caribou) herd's calving range is in the proposed national park to the east of the community of Paulatuk, there are years when calving does occur to the west of the park on what are likely to be prime exploration, and possibly development, lands.
Joey Amos, Vice-chair
Inuvik Community Corporation

EA Process
At the heart of the matter is the question of whether impact and benefit agreements between Aboriginal organizations and resource companies for a particular project can, in any way, constrain or limit the kinds of decisions the EA body may take.
Makivik Corporation

Mining and Tourism
...tourism is linked to cultural experience and the opportunity for non First Nation people to learn about Yukon cultures, customs, and traditions. Mining, if not managed well, will provide only short-term opportunities and limit further chances for a sustainable tourist programme.
Joe Johnson, Chief
Kluane First Nation

These comments are taken from discussions held between CARC and aboriginal peoples.


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