Thursday, April 24, 2014
Text Size

First Nations, environment groups sue Yukon over Peel plan

Yukon plan to open Peel River watershed to development called violation of land claims

CBC News

Two Yukon First Nations and two conservation groups are suing the territorial government over its plan to open the Peel River watershed to development.

The lawsuit will be filed Monday afternoon in Yukon Supreme Court by the Nacho Nyak Dun, the Tr'ondek Hwech'in, the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society Yukon and the Yukon Conservation Society.

The Peel River watershed in northeast Yukon covers almost 70,000 square kilometres.

The groups say the Yukon government's land use plan for the Peel River watershed violates land claims signed with First Nations.

Lawyer Thomas Berger says the development scheme unilaterally ignores the Peel River Planning Commission's proposed land-use plan, which was supported by First Nations.

The planning commission spent more than five years talking to First Nations and the public before releasing its recommendations. It called for as much as 80 per cent of the region to be withdrawn from any industrial development, including mineral staking.

The territorial government rejected that plan and said it would not ban mining in an area that large. Its plan allows mining in 71 per cent of the region.

First Nation leaders say this should not be a fight between aboriginal people and miners. A chief in Yukon's Klondike region says there's no hostility between them.

"That said, we do not want to see mining in the Peel watershed," said Eddie Taylor, chief of the Tr'ondek Hwech'in First Nation. "To us that land is sacred and should be preserved for future generations. As our elders say, the Peel is our church, our university and our breadbasket."

The groups announced the lawsuit at a news conference this morning in Vancouver.

Yukon Premier Darrell Pasloski, Environment Minister Currie Dixon and Energy, Mines and Resources Minister Scott Kent are also in Vancouver today, promoting Yukon's mining interests at the annual Mineral Exploration Roundup.

Whatever Trevor

Dis is Trevor.

Blast from the past: FP archive

When is Consultation, Consultation?

Write comment (7 Comments)

Ovide Mercredi

National Chief – AFN

During a Treaty Roundtable meeting of the Alberta Chiefs, I took note of a federal government document outlining their strategy to define and ultimately impose their own form of self-government. Read more...

Letting go of residential schools

Write comment (2 Comments)

by Gilbert Oskaboose, Nov 1993 First Perspective

There is a lot of "unfinished business" in Indian Country. Garbage that we as a people have never really dealt with. Chief among them is the whole issue of those infamous residential schools and their impact on people. Read more...

OBIDIAH

obidiah picture

ANALYSIS - Bill Gallagher

gallagher picture

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit

Under the Northern Sky by Xavier Kataquapit

EVENTS

April 2014
S M T W T F S
30 31 1 2 3 4 5
6 7 8 9 10 11 12
13 14 15 16 17 18 19
20 21 22 23 24 25 26
27 28 29 30 1 2 3
Mon Mar 31 @ 8:00AM - 05:00PM
NICE ‘Indian’ Trust Funds
Fri Apr 04 @ 8:00AM - 05:00PM
THE 21ST ANNUAL ABORIGINAL MIXED CURLING BONSPIEL

John Bigface

imageimageimageimageimage
cartoonscartoonscartoonscartoonscartoons

Current Video

Indigenous Writers Festival 2014 Opening Night

Write comment (0 Comments)

Chief Arlen Dumas Confronts NC Shawn Atleo

Write comment (2 Comments)

Employment