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West Moberly First Nations signs benefits agreement with B.C. government

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LNG Industry,

West Moberly First Nations – a Treaty 8 First Nation located 20 km northwest of Chetwynd, British Columbia (B.C.), Canada – has signed a natural gas pipeline benefits agreement with the provincial government regarding TransCanada’s proposed Coastal GasLink pipeline.

The Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation, John Rustad, said: “Participation in LNG projects provides First Nations from east to west along the LNG corridor with a significant opportunity to benefit from this emerging industry. As a member of the Treaty 8 First Nations, Chief Willson and the West Moberly First Nations should be commended for taking a positive and active part in shaping the future of British Columbia.”

The agreement will provide West Moberly with direct financial benefits, including an initial payment of CAN$201 000, as well as a second payment of approximately CAN$1 million, if the pipeline proceeds to the construction phase. In addition to this, a further payment of CAN$1 million will be made once the pipeline enters service, and a yet-to-be-determined share of CAN$10 million/yr will be received by West Moberly in ongoing benefits when this occurs.

Furthermore, the province recently invested CAN$500 000 in skills training funding through the residential building maintenance worker apprenticeship programme and the Moberly Lake academic programme – both of which West Moberly will benefit from.

Chief Roland Willson, West Moberly First Nation, said: “Securing the future of our community through good jobs and skills training is a key responsibility between one generation and the next. Our Nation has taken a leadership role in identifying and recognising the impacts from LNG through initiatives like the Regional Strategic Environmental Assessment. Our early and meaningful participation in this developing industry has given us the opportunity to ensure that we play an active role in shaping if, when, or how LNG develops in British Columbia.”

Edited from press release by David Rowlands

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