Posted By: Angelica Montgomery
CJAD 800 (Montreal)
The PQ vows that its re-jigged plan for the North will show more respect for the environment and local communities than it's Liberal predecessor. But, both environmentalists and First Nations are already condemning some of the Parti Quebecois's decisions.
Quebec's Assembly of First Nations boycotted Pauline Marois' press conference. And, both Greenpeace and Nature Quebec have sent out withering statements, condemning the PQ for slashing the amount of land that will be protected under its new "North for all" plan.
First Nations boycott
First Nations were not involved when the PQ constructed its development plan, says Ghislain Picard, chief of the Assembly of First Nations.
"Obviously, in this case, the principal of consultation was completely set aside." Picard says he was only informed of the "North for all" announcement on Friday - a matter of days before the event.
Pauline Marois says she will meet with First Nations representatives shortly. A pledge that in no way satisfies Picard. "The government's making decisions and then claiming to consult with us afterwards. Obviously, that doesn't work for us."
Picard adds that the process was no better under the Liberals
In the meantime, environnemental groups say the Parti Quebecois is scraping the Liberal pledge to set aside 50% of Northern territory for preservation.
The Marois government has so far refused to say how much land will be protected, but groups like Greenpeace and Nature Quebec are alarmed over a suggestion that no more than 12% will be preserved.
"No insurance policy has been put in place to protect these territories