Northern B.C. Community and First Nation unite to fight LNG

Gail MacDonald and Yvonne Lattie

From: Leila Darwish []
Sent: December-09-15 8:59 AM
Subject: Media Release: Northern B.C Community and First Nations Unite to Fight LNG


For Immediate Release December 9, 2015

Northern B.C. Community and First Nation unite to fight LNG

(Hazelton, B.C.) The Northern B.C. residents of Kispiox Valley have united with local First Nations leaders to stop TransCanada’s proposed pipeline, the Prince Rupert Gas Transmission project and Petronas’ proposed Pacific Northwest LNG plant on Lelu Island.

“We tried working with the BC Government and the pipeline companies but they have ignored our concerns. Now it’s time to act together – as First Nations and non-First Nations, united. We are standing together to protect our future,” said retired community development consultant Gail MacDonald.

A group including doctors, farmers, loggers, farriers, nurses, business owners, and guide outfitters hosted a dinner at the Kispiox Community Hall on December 3 to discuss LNG development. Residents were shocked to learn that while no LNG project has received a final approval or investment decision, the BC government has granted permits for pipeline work at several locations near their community and considerable work has already begun. This has occurred without communication between the BC government and local residents.

While the First Nations and non-First Nations communities of Kispiox have a long history of working together, the rapid pace of scale of pipeline development has taken their relationship to a new level.

“This is about more than just a pipeline,” said local business owner Joy Allen. “It’s about having an LNG plant built in our river’s estuary and it’s about the fracking taking place in the Northeast. These things are a threat to our climate, our livelihoods, our health, our culture and our wild salmon.”

“The BC Government is ignoring our concerns and has put oil and gas interests above the public interest. The corruption we’ve seen in their dealings with both First Nations and non-First Nations is staggering. We will not stand idly by and let this continue,” said Gilbert Johnson, member of the Kispiox Band.

Lax Kw’alaams, the Gitga’at First Nation, and a Gitxsan group known as Madii Lii have all launched court cases against the Petronas project. As well the Haida Nation has declared that no LNG tankers will be permitted through their coastal waters.

“Deals are being signed by a few Hereditary Chiefs but most of us don’t want this industry in our traditional territories. A Hereditary Chief does not have the sole authority to make decisions, as he or she has many house members who have a say on what happens in their traditional territories,” said 67-year-old Chief Gwininitxw, Yvonne Lattie of the Gitxsan Nation. “This is about the people who live here. This is our home and this should be our decision – not one made by some shareholder from across the ocean or someone at a desk in Victoria who won’t have to live with the consequences.”

For more information or to arrange interviews, please contacts:

Gail MacDonald (250) 842-2102
Yvonne Lattie (250) 842-5848

For pictures, please email

Link to Kispiox Valley Declaration -