On November 4, 2019, Upper Nicola Band and Trans Mountain reached an agreement related to the Trans Mountain Expansion Project. This is a significant step forward in establishing a relationship with a strong foundation for addressing environmental, archaeological and cultural heritage concerns that Upper Nicola has about the Expansion Project.
The Agreement provides resourcing to support Upper Nicola being more actively involved in emergency response and monitoring through the life of the Project. The Agreement supports the Parties to work together to avoid and mitigate impacts of the Expansion Project on Upper Nicola Interests and stewardship responsibilities within their Area of Responsibility.
It also supports community members to take advantage of employment and contracting opportunities and benefits.
“UNB negotiating came up with the best deal possible under the circumstances presented. The bottom line is that the Consultation process needs to change” said Chief Harvey McLeod of the Upper Nicola Band. “We look forward to working with Trans Mountain to implement this Agreement honourably and in good faith. We still have several significant issues that must be addressed directly with Canada. We continue to hold Canada to a consent-based approach consistent with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Canada still has a lot of work to do to recognize and respect Syilx title and rights, including our governance rights, and engage in consent-based dialogue with Upper Nicola and with our Nation”.
With Upper Nicola agreeing with the Corporation it leaves the Coldwater Band as the only remaining Nicola Valley First Nation still contesting the pipeline in court.
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