Review of Prosperity Mine Rebid must be swift and transparent
Evidence already proves it cannot be accepted
Soda Creek, BC, November 7, 2011: BC’s First Nations Women Advocating Responsible Mining (FNWARM) today joined the Tsilhqot’in Nation in denouncing the unnecessary review of the Prosperity Mine rebid.
“There can be no doubt that this is one of the worst projects, pursued in the worst way – we are being forced to waste time and money on a proposal that the company itself has clearly admitted is worse than the plan that was rejected a year ago,” said FNWARM Chair Bev Sellars, Chief of the Xat’sull (Soda Creek) First Nation.
“We can only hope this review is based on a technicality and that it will be dealt with quickly through a transparent public review by the same panel that studied the first project. As long as the decision is based on facts – not spin or unchallenged false claims – this project cannot be approved,” said Chief Sellars.
Chief Sellars said that after 17 years of the company trying to push through this project despite being clearly told by federal authorities and others that it could never be approved, it is time to put a permanent end to this disastrous fiasco so that First Nations can focus on working with industry and government to reform the mining system to create certainty of process and fairness.
“It makes no sense for companies and their investors to waste tens of millions of dollars and many years on projects that should never have been developed, and which First Nations and others have no choice but to oppose because they are so bad or unfair,” said Chief Sellars.
“The best thing that Premier Christy Clark can do if she wants to see mines opened in BC is to work with First Nations and the industry to develop a reformed system that prevents wrong projects from being pursued and creates an agreed-on process that allows us to identify and pursue the right projects in the right way,” Chief Sellars said.
Chief Sellars noted the Association for Mineral Exploration BC and the Mining Association of BC said during an FNWARM forum on the industry’s future that they want a clear process, too, and that the province needs to bring everyone to the table.
“We might not yet agree on how to reform the staking and tenure system, the discredited BC EA process and engage in genuine land-use planning and decision-sharing, but there is agreement that change is needed and that we need to start talking,” said Chief Sellars.
“The damage that approval for the Prosperity Mine project would inflict on the credibility of the EA process and the honour of the Crown in terms of protecting First Nations rights cannot be overstated. We need this confrontational Prosperity Mine proposal laid to rest so that we can work on building trust and good relationships.”
Media contact: FNWARM Chair, Chief Bev Sellars: Ph: 250-989-2323. Cell: 250-267-6924
Posted by: Wolfgang Zilker Tuesday Nov 08, 2011 16:19
Categories: First Nations, Prosperity Mine | Tags: Environmental Assessment, FNWARM