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Report on Best Practices in Environmental Assessment for First Nations

by NationTalk on September 25, 2009950 Views

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September 25, 2009
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

Vancouver – The New Relationship Trust (NRT) today released the report Best Practices for First Nation Involvement in Environmental Assessment Reviews of Development Projects in British Columbia. The report provides suggestions on how to promote the meaningful involvement of First Nations in environment assessment (EA) processes. The suggestions are based on discussions with EA practitioners, mostly from First Nations in British Columbia (BC), but also from government and industry.NRT commissioned Elmar Plate and Malcolm Foy of LGL Limited and Rick Krehbiel of First Nations Environmental Assessment Technical Working Group to write the report as a result of First Nations people in BC telling NRT that it was important to improve the EA processes. The report provides an overview of the methods and systems that could be used to support First Nations involvement in the EA process and suggestions on how to improve the EA processes to better enable First Nations to become involved in the processes.

“By sharing the best practices report, NRT hopes to assist BC First Nations to improve their ability to deal with the EA processes,” stated NRT General Manager, Chanze Gamble. “But the report isn’t just for First Nations – it also has recommendations that should be considered by BC and the federal governments, not only from the legal perspective but also common sense. The First Nations are asserting inherent rights and title to the land and the courts have confirmed their legitimacy – the EA processes need to mirror this reality.”

“Environmental Assessment is an important process for reconciling interests on the shared land base,” states Rick Krehbiel, member of the First Nations Environmental Assessment Technical Working Group. “We are very hopeful that the wide range of options and perspectives included in this Guide will contribute to increasing its effectiveness.”

NRT is a not-for-profit organization that supports First Nation communities in British Columbia in their efforts to build capacity in order to become healthy, prosperous and self-sufficient.

The Best Practices for First Nation Involvement in Environmental Assessment Reviews of Development Projects in British Columbia report is one of five best practice reports commissioned by NRT to be released in the fall of 2009. The other four First Nations best practices reports include:
• Comprehensive Community Planning
• Governance (previously released)
• Consultation and Accommodation
• Land Use Planning (previously released)

Download Best Practices Report here.

For more information:

Chanze Gamble
General Manager, NRT
Tel: 604-925-3338 or 1-800-922-3338
Email: cgamble[at]nrtf.ca
Website: www.newrelationshiptrust.ca

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