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CONTRIBUTION · 10th August 2011
Justine Hunter Globe and Mail
Last updated Wednesday, Aug. 10, 2011
From Wednesday's Globe and Mail

LAX KW’ALAAMS FIRST NATION DEMANDS BC HYDRO PROJECT STOP UNTIL COMPENSATION DEAL IS REACHED

A native band in northern B.C. has thrown a wrench into work on the first stage of the $400-million Northwest Transmission Line, saying BC Hydro must reach a deal on compensation before the project can continue.

Members of the Lax Kw’alaams were travelling a narrow logging road north of Terrace that leads to a section of the proposed line on the weekend when they came across a crew unloading equipment to begin geotechnical drilling work.

The band members, working as “cultural monitors,” ordered the contractors to stop work. The Lax Kw’alaams argue that BC Hydro should not be doing preliminary work in their traditional territories until they reach an agreement.

The crew stopped work and packed up their equipment, but a BC Hydro official said the crew was working in another band’s territory and will be back at work shortly.

“We understood we were working in Kitsumkalum territory,” said Greg Reimer, B.C. Hydro's executive vice-president for transmission and distribution. “We’re going to mobilize the crew and get them back to work in the area in the next few days. We are anticipating we won’t have any more difficulties, and we are hoping we can get on with negotiations with the Lax Kw’alaams.”

The Northwest Transmission Line will cross 344 kilometres from a point near Terrace to a new substation near Bob Quinn Lake, passing through lands claimed by eight separate first nations. BC Hydro has reached agreements with five of those communities.

Overlapping land claims are not uncommon in B.C., where few treaties have been settled with natives.

The first 28 kilometres of the line would pass through land claimed as traditional territory by the Lax Kw’alaams.

Read More Here.
gimme a break
Comment by rod on 14th August 2011
lets not play the "defer the responsibility and blame the white man" game again..it is unproductive and regressive. the responsibility lies with those involved. And last i checked, this land is LEGALLY owned by the government or the "PEOPLE". Until the "white man" and First Nations learn how to synergize to obtain a win win situation so that we all may benefit from the economic oportunities being presented to us (this does not mean cash exclusively), this same old BS will plague our region and country forever, increase racial tension, and divide our communities. There is no doubt that the first Nations in this country were taken advantage of beyond comprehension and only up until recently there has been an effort to repair the damage, but if we as a people do not educate ourselves about the cultural differences, increase tolerance for those who are ignorant about cultural differences, find common ground, reach for higher heights as one nation, we will continue in this quagmire indefinitely. If this happens, racial tension will increase until its too late and the line is crossed permanantly! lets try something new for a change.
Well Denise...
Comment by Apocalypse Now on 14th August 2011
This is the cost of doing business in a country where the minorities have a voice. I am sure it is as frustrating for your people as it is for the rest of the people of the province who have to wait for decisions to be made when first nations issues have to be resolved. Maybe the posters on here are correct when they say its all about money and payouts, obviously their price has been met but the price of the LAX KW’ALAAMS hasn't . I guess you just have to grin and bare it.
and u
Comment by me on 12th August 2011
August 12, 2011

Lax Kw'alaams has mile 43 blocked off right now...it is in Kitsumkalum/Nisga'a Territories. Talk about radicals or what. Not to mention that they are logging in Kitsumkalum's Traditonal Territory without even asking...talk about nervy. Ignorance is Bliss hey Lax Kw'alaams radicals!
Laughable
Comment by the true story on 11th August 2011
This would be pretty funny if it wasn't so serious. All Lax Kw'alaams cares about is money..............they will step on whoever and whatever to get it. They act as if they are so concerned about the NTL project from an environmental/cultural standpoint, and meanwhile they are raping and pillaging the environment with Coast Tsimshian Resources, 1980s style clear-cutting with a ton of waste and no thought to the environment, and who cares about any other values. I hope Hydro shuts these folks out of any deal in "their" traditional territory.
Miss
Comment by Miss Priss of the 70's on 10th August 2011
Lax Kw'alaams may belong to the same nation as Kitsumkalum, but they radicals and are over stepping their boundaries. I sure hope Kitsumkalum puts their foot down to Lax Kw'alaams and lets them know where their place is in Kalum's traditional territories, meaning they don't belong there.
Lax Kw'alaams will not even show up to the negotiation table with Kitsumkalum, so who do they think they are!!
Lax Kw'alaams and the Kitsumkalum are the same nation
Comment by Merv Ritchie on 10th August 2011
This is almost laughable if it wasn't so serious. No wonder companies are frightened and unsecure to do business in BC. The Government of Canada divided the Nations into groups and got them fighting each other.

The Tsimshian Nation is one Nation. Reinstate the Hereditary Sim'oogit, the true leaders and then have one senior level of government to deal with.

This began with the outlawing of the potlatch, the government feasts of authority.

The Canadain and BC governments are now reaping their own reward of instability.