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First Nations Governments

The area of the B.C. coast that has been leased to oil companies includes at least 9 million hectares of our coastal waters. These leases were given to oil companies without consultation with First Nations. However, the area is part of the traditional territories of over 28 First Nations and where there exists unsettled land claims and treaties. Very little time and hardly any resources have been made available for First Nations to carry out research to inform themselves about what an offshore oil and gas industry would mean to their communities, cultures and livelihoods. The 2004 report, Rights, Risks and Respect, produced for the federal government after interviewing 70 First Nations, showed unified opposition to lifting of the moratorium.

  Click here to see the full report.

The Coastal First Nations organization commissioned Simon Fraser University to conduct a study on the possible affects an offshore oil and gas industry would have on the B.C. coast. The study concluded that modest size offshore oil and gas development could result in 484 small oil spills and a one in five chance of a large oil spill over the 25-year project operation. The Coastal First Nations (CFN) is an alliance of First Nations on British Columbia’s North and Central Coast and Haida Gwaii. The CFN includes Wuikinuxv Nation, Heiltsuk, Kitasoo/Xaixais, Gitga’at, Haisla, Metlakatla, Old Massett, Skidegate and the Council of the Haida Nation.

  Click here to read the study.


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photo credit: Simon Davies