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Site C Dam – The Crown’s Approach to Treaty 8 First Nations Consultation - Legal Backgrounder

Subject: 
Treaty 8 First Nations, Site C Dam,
Author: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Summary: 

The Site C Dam project proposal engages the jurisdiction and lawful authority of Treaty 8 First Nations. Both the BC and federal governments have a constitutional duty to consult and accommodate Treaty 8 First Nations in making decisions about the project. The province’s decision to proceed with the Site C Dam was taken without proper consultation with Treaty 8 First Nations. There have been numerous flaws in the way the Crown has approached First Nations consultation on the Site C Dam. For example, the Crown’s unilaterally decided on the process it would use to consider and approve the Site C Dam, disregarding the mutually binding promises contained in Treaty No. 8. The Crown has also failed to involve First Nations at a high level of strategic decision-making about the use of the Peace River to generate
electricity when it made early decisions about the dam’s feasibility. The commitment to build the Site C Dam without achieving the free, prior and informed consent of Treaty 8 First Nations is likely a violation of Canada’s commitments under international law.

Publication Date: 
May 1, 2010
Publication Pages: 
5
Publisher: 
West Coast Environmental Law
Publication City: 
Vancouver, BC
Publication Format: 
PDF