Natural Gas Minister Rich Coleman

Nisga’a Nation signs on to LNG project

Benefit agreement clears way for PETRONAS LNG project, pipeline through Lava Bed Park, with more terminals possible

A $6 million benefit agreement with the Nisga’a Nation to build a gas pipeline through its territory is the first of a series of deals that will share benefits of liquefied natural gas development with B.C. First Nations, Aboriginal Relations Minister John Rustad says.

Rustad and Natural Gas Development Minister Rich Coleman signed the agreement Thursday with Nisga’a Nation President Mitchell Stevens to accommodate a pipeline through Nisga’a territory to an LNG export facility proposed near Prince Rupert.

The pipeline is proposed by TransCanada Corp. to supply gas from northeast gas fields to an export facility at the Port of Prince Rupert. But the Nisga’a have aspirations to go beyond one project.

The Nisga’a government has identified four sites near the mouth of the Nass River that have level land and ship access that could accommodate land-based or floating LNG terminals.

“We’re not interested in a pipe that comes from the northeast and brings raw resources to the coast,” Stevens said. “What we are interested in is a pipe that gives us an opportunity to provide for an economic base for Nisga’a citizens. And these are the sites that were identified, which we own in fee simple.”

The Prince Rupert proposal is led by Malaysian energy company PETRONAS, which is expected to be one of the first of more than a dozen LNG proposals to make its final investment decision.

The B.C. and Nisga’a legislatures are changing legislation to allow a gas pipeline to pass through Nisga’a Memorial Lava Bed Park, the first provincial park to be co-managed with an aboriginal community.

The B.C. government has also proposed legislation to give the Nisga’a government taxation authority over natural gas facilities in their territory.

The Nisga’a government has also made an agreement for a still-undetermined share of $10 million in annual benefits from the TransCanada pipeline.

Stevens said there was opposition within the community to the pipeline proposal, but after an extraordinary debate where all Nisga’a hereditary leaders addressed the elected legislature, the project was approved by a two-thirds majority.

“The opportunity to be an active player in the LNG industry is the kind of opportunity for which our elders struggled for over a century, so we could achieve sustainable prosperity for our people  into the next century,” Stevens said. “Our elders have told us, now is the time to be bold and move forward.”

 

Just Posted

‘Out of the Interior: Survival of the Small-town Cinema in British Columbia’ is coming to Gate House Theatre in Port McNeill

On Saturday, June 8 at 7:00 p.m., ‘Out of the Interior’ documentary will screen at Gate House Theatre.

North Island Rising: Political polarization

This fall there will be a minimum of four candidates wanting your vote here on the North Island.

Bradshaw’s Photo Highlight: The last walk together

“I would give almost anything to be able to have another walk together”

North Island College holding information session on new culinary diploma

Get a sneak peek at the new culinary kitchen at the Campbell River campus

Council approves replacement of overhead heaters at Fire Hall

Port Hardy council has agreed to spend $11,000 on the replacement of… Continue reading

REPLAY: The best videos from across B.C. this week

In case you missed it, here’s a look at the replay-worth highlights from this week in the province

Raptors beat Bucks 100-94 to advance to franchise’s first-ever NBA Finals

Leonard has 27 points, 17 boards to lead Toronto past Milwaukee

Third person charged in death of B.C. teen Bhavkiran Dhesi

Inderdeep Kaur Deo facing charge of accessory after the fact to murder

Kamloops girl, 9, recovering from carbon monoxide poisoning now out of ICU

Her mother who was sleeping in the same tent with her did not survive

‘I think he’s still alive’: B.C. mom pleads for help finding son last seen a month ago

Family offering $5,000 reward for information leading to the safe return of Tim Delahaye

New poll suggests one-third don’t want politicians to wear religious symbols

Local politicians shouldn’t be allowed to wear hijabs, crucifixes or turbans on the job, survey suggests

Raptors fans far from home adjust plans to watch pivotal playoff game

Raptors currently lead the playoff series 3-2, and a win Saturday would vault them into NBA finals

PHOTOS: First responders in Fernie rescue baby owl who fell from nest

The baby owl’s inability to fly back to its nest prompted a rescue by first responders

Five takeaways from the Court of Appeal ruling on B.C.’s pipeline law

It’s unclear how many tools are left in B.C.’s toolbox to fight the project

Most Read