1 September 2016 | West Coast Environmental Law

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September 2016

RELAW Project: Summer in review

19 September, 2016

Over the summer, the Revitalizing Indigenous Law for Land, Air and Water (RELAW) team has been busy working with stories, and travelling to visit with participating Nations about Indigenous laws. The six participating First Nations are looking at creating water policies, marine use plans, environmental codes of ethics, consent regimes, and environmental assessment practices all rooted in their own laws.

This presentation by Articled Student Lindsay Borrows summarizes in photos and stories some of the lessons and activities to date in revitalizing Indigenous laws through the RELAW Project.

 

 

Over the summer, the Revitalizing Indigenous Law for Land, Air and Water (RELAW) team has been busy working with stories, and travelling to visit with participating Nations about Indigenous laws.

Field notes from the Haida Gwaii Potlatch: Why government and industry should take heed of Indigenous governance decisions

14 September, 2016

I was honoured to have been invited to witness this historic potlatch, Raven Always Sets Things Right, hosted by the Yahgulaanaas/Janaas Raven Clan of Haida Gwaii. I visited Haida Gwaii for the first time just last year, and it left an indelible mark as a very special part of the world, as it does for most who are lucky enough to visit, so I was happy to return.

The potlatch was significant for a number of reasons. The primary work was to remove the hereditary chieftainships of two hereditary chiefs. The hereditary chiefs had signed a support letter for Enbridge’s request for a deadline extension on one of the 209 conditions of its approval in June 2014. No one I spoke to could remember hearing about an act as serious as removing a chieftainship before, although the possibility of the removal of a name is part of the chief naming ceremony itself.  The removal of the hereditary chieftainships in this potlatch needs to be understood by industry and governments as a legitimate and powerful response that undermines the commonly used tactic of cherry picking individuals to support their projects and “divide and conquer” communities.

 

Mug shot: One of the gifts from the potlatch – “Raven Always Sets Things Right”

Yo ho wee
Yo ha wee yo wee yah
Hey hi yo
Ha wee ah wee yah wee yah
Hey hi yo ha wee
Ah wee ah-ha
Ah wee-ee ah wee yah

You can play a role in legally protecting the Pacific north coast from oil tankers

8 September, 2016

After decades of work by the West Coast Environmental Law Association and our allies to uphold and legally entrench an oil tanker ban on the north coast of BC, Transport Minister Marc Garneau recently confirmed that the federal government will be formalizing the Pacific north coast oil tanker moratorium within the next few months. Federal legislation will complement an existing tanker ban imposed by Coastal First Nations as a matter of their own jurisdiction and laws.

Make your voice heard for a permanent, comprehensive, legislated oil tanker ban before September 30, 2016.

 

Make your voice heard for a permanent, comprehensive, legislated oil tanker ban before September 30, 2016.