The Latest B.C. Mining Reform Wins

There have been some good news stories on BC Mining Reform recently and it’s been great to see movement toward defending wild salmon and ensuring development doesn’t happen at the expense of one of our most valuable resources.

Win #1:

The B.C. Government has agreed to pause mineral staking on Gitxaala and Ehattesaht territories – the Nations that brought the Supreme Court legal case challenging BC’s free entry system.

 

This is an important step towards respecting Indigenous rights, and we thank the BC Government and Josie Osborne for their decision.

 

We joined sixteen other organizations, coalitions and networks to thank Premier David Eby, Minister Osborne and Minister Cullen for their decision to implement interim measures halting mineral claim registrations and mining activities within the territories of the Gitxaała and Ehattesaht First Nations. These measures represent a crucial step towards meaningful reconciliation, where communities have a secure future with healthy forests and wildlife, clean water and thriving livelihoods.

Read our letter in full here

The Context:

In a landmark court decision released in September 2023, the B.C. Supreme Court ruled that B.C.’s “free entry” mineral claim-staking regime is unconstitutional and gave the provincial government 18 months to start including First Nations consultation before granting mineral tenures.


The ruling is a result of Gitxaala and Ehattesaht Nations’ joint legal challenge of one of B.C.’s oldest colonial laws.

Win #2:

The B.C. Government announced they will start the process of consultation on Mineral Tenure Act reform with First Nations and other stakeholders (including the public) this month – March 2024.

 

We’re excited to participate and advocate for changes to defend B.C. wild salmon and their habitats to allow them to thrive in a changing climate.

The Context:

“We are committed to the full transformation of B.C.’s mining regulatory system, including modernizing the Mineral Tenure Act, and this government-to-government work must be reflective of the shared interests and values of everyone who lives and works on these lands.” – Josie Osborne, Minister of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation

It’s great to see momentum for much-needed systemic change. In addition to supporting First Nations’ rights to consultation and consent, SkeenaWild will advocate for better environmental protections to be included in the Province’s reform of the Mineral Tenure Act.

Why do we advocate for B.C. Mining Reform?

Salmon require a variety of intact habitats to persist in a changing world.

Development can happen within the watershed, but it should not be at the expense of wild salmon and their habitat.

We can’t allow our communities, values, precious resources, and livelihoods to be put at risk for the benefit of multinational corporations and governments worlds away.

We want to thank you, our community, for supporting our work. Our achievements are your achievements, and together, we can make a difference in defending wild BC salmon and steelhead.

How can you help?

Get Involved:

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