Declaration Signatories. Pic Cred: Dan Mesec.
Lelu Island and Flora Bank, critical habitat for wild salmon at the mouth of the Skeena River in northwestern BC have been declared permanently protected from industrial development by an unprecedented coalition of First Nations leaders, local residents and federal and provincial politicians, creating another hurdle for development of a liquefied natural gas plant near Prince Rupert.
The signing of The Lelu Island Declaration presents a major obstacle to plans by Malaysian-owned oil and gas giant Petronas, to develop a liquefied natural gas (LNG) plant near Prince Rupert. The declaration also deals a huge blow to the provincial government’s stated aim to get major LNG plants under construction before next year’s provincial election.
“The Lelu Declaration sends a powerful message to Premier Clark and Prime Minister Trudeau,” said Hereditary Chief Yahaan of the Gitwilgyoots Tribe of the Lax Kw’alaams. “The support to stop this LNG project is overwhelming. Nations are united from the headwaters of the Skeena River to the ocean. Together, we will fight this to the end.”
The declaration was the culmination of a two-day Salmon Nation Summit, where more than 300 hereditary and elected First Nations leaders, scientists, politicians, commercial and sport fishermen, and other northern residents came together to defend wild salmon from the proposed Pacific NorthWest LNG project.
Hereditary Chief Yahaan signing declaration. Pic Cred: Friends of Wild Salmon.
Signatories to the declaration included hereditary leaders from the Nine Allies Tribes of the Lax Kw’alaams First Nation, and hereditary leaders of the Gitxsan, Wet’suwet’en, Lake Babine, and Haisla First Nations. Grand Chief Stewart Phillip of the Union of BC Indian Chiefs also signed the declaration.
To read the full article by the Salmon Nation Summit, click here.