TransCanada has recently announced that its Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project has signed project agreements with six British Columbia (B.C.) First Nations. This seemingly represents a positive step for the project and for the people of these First Nations whose traditional and treaty territories are located along the proposed Coastal GasLink natural gas pipeline route.
The First Nations that have signed the agreement are Wet'suwet'en First Nation, Skin Tyee Nation, Nee-Tahi-Buhn Band, Yekooche First Nation, Doig River First Nation, and Halfway River First Nation.
Coastal GasLink is set to construct and operate a 670 km natural gas pipeline from the Groundbirch area, near Dawson Creek, to the proposed LNG Canada LNG export facility near Kitimat. The project is a key component of TransCanada's $46 billion capital growth plan, which includes more than $13 billion in proposed natural gas pipeline projects to support the emerging LNG industry on the B.C. coast.
The project agreements include various financial and other benefits related to the pipeline project. Remunerations will include developing skills training, employment and utilising aboriginal businesses in contracting opportunities. Furthermore, these agreements are part of the Coastal GasLink's long-term, comprehensive approach to working with aboriginal groups on opportunities regarding B.C.'s emerging LNG industry.
Approximately 27% of over 300 000 hrs of fieldwork on the project has been conducted by aboriginals. This input allows the project to incorporate local knowledge into the pipeline's design, including routing and site-specific mitigation plans.
Rick Gateman, President of Coastal GasLink Pipeline Project, said: "These agreements reinforce the strong relationships we have built with these First Nations communities, and demonstrate their willingness to participate in the many benefits this project will bring to their people, both today and well into the future […] This isn't a choice between economics and culture, environment and a traditional way of life for First Nations communities. These agreements highlight how First Nations communities can enjoy the economic benefits of the project while continuing to live their way of life."
Edited from press release by Callum O'Reilly
Read the article online at: https://www.lngindustry.com/liquefaction/30062015/bc-first-nations-sign-agreements-with-coastal-gaslink-pipeline-project-963/