The Assembly of Treaty Chiefs, which represents Chiefs from Treaty 6, Treaty 7 and Treaty 8 territories in Canada, have issued a unanimous resolution of support for the Lubicon Lake Cree Nation in their ongoing land rights struggle with TransCanada, the Alberta Utilities Commission, and the Provincial and Federal governments.
“Notably, Treaty 8 covers the lands surrounding Lubicon Territory through which the North Central Crossing Pipeline is also intended to pass — meaning that Chiefs all along the pipeline route have declared their support for the Lubicon position”, points out the solidarity group, Friends of the Lubicon.
“Specifically, the Chiefs have told TransCanada that the company ‘must obtain the approval of the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation before TransCanada begins construction of any projects within Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Territory.'”
“They say also that ‘if TransCanada Corporation does not wish to obtain Lubicon Lake Indian Nation approval for construction within Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Territory, then TransCanada Corporation must alternatively re-route its pipeline around Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Territory.'”
The resolution, which is reproduced below, comes just a little over three weeks after the Lubicon received some renewed support from human rights groups and church organizations.
It also follows a welcomed article by Dr. David Suzuki, a respected scientist and environmentalist, who has visited the Lubicon Nation on several occasions. Calling for people to support the Lubicon, Dr. Suzuki wrote:
In the vacuum left by governments that have historically ignored their peoples’ concerns, the Lubicon government is insisting on its own regulatory process that would do more than rubber-stamp increasing environmental and social disruption.
[…] Ultimately the Lubicon’s struggle is about keeping all of us safe. The responsibility of governments to protect the environment hasn’t received the same attention from politicians as the recent financial collapse, but in the long run environmental deregulation by government threatens to do a lot more damage to our economies, the health of our ecosystems, and our well-being.
If you would like to support or learn more about the Lubicon, please visit the Friends of the Lubicon Alberta website.
Assembly of Treaty Chiefs
SUBJECT: SUPPORT FOR THE LUBICON LAKE INDIAN NATION IN THEIR OPPOSITION TO THE PROPOSED NORTH CENTRAL CORRIDOR PIPELINE
WHEREAS the Chiefs of the Treaty No. 6, Treaty No. 7, Treaty No. 8 [Alberta] known as the Assembly of Treaty Chiefs [hereinafter] did meet in a duly convened Fall Sitting held at the Radisson Hotel, in the City of Edmonton, Treaty No. 6 Territory on November 4th, 5th and 6th, 2008; and
WHEREAS the TransCanada Corporation plans to begin construction of the massive North Central Corridor Pipeline through Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Traditional Lands without first consulting and accommodating the concerns of the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation; and
WHEREAS the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation has told TransCanada that they oppose construction of the proposed North Central Corridor Pipeline until representatives of TransCanada agree to respect Lubicon Lake Indian Nation land rights by addressing Lubicon Lake Indian Nation concerns about the environmental and social impacts of pipeline construction, operation, and related activities, and by obtaining Lubicon Lake Indian Nation approval for the project before starting construction; and
WHEREAS other resource companies have already set precedence by signing agreements with the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation committing them to first obtain Lubicon Lake Indian Nation approval for projects within Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Traditional Territory; and
WHEREAS if the TransCanada Corporation does not wish to obtain Lubicon Lake Indian Nation approval for construction within Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Territory, then TransCanada Corporation must alternatively re-route its pipeline around Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Traditional Territory; and
WHEREAS the Chiefs of the North Peace Tribal Council have met at a duly convened meeting on November 03, 2008 and fully support the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation in their position.
THEREFORE, BE IT RESOLVED THAT the Assembly of Treaty Chiefs also fully support the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation in their position that TransCanada Corporation must obtain the approval of the Lubicon Lake Indian Nation before TransCanada Corporation begins construction of any projects within Lubicon Lake Indian Nation Traditional Territory.
MOVED BY: CHIEF ALLAN PAUL, ALEXANDER FIRST NATION
SECONDED BY: CHIEF RUPERT MENEEN, TALLCREE FIRST NATION