Developing strategic land use plans can be a powerful way for a First Nation to exercise its Aboriginal Title, and to translate its laws and the wisdom of its Elders into maps and written rules that communicate its choices about land and water use to the Crown and third parties. Many First Nations have developed strategic land use plans and a number are engaged in strategic land use planning negotiations with the Crown; however, provincial law and policy currently present barriers to respecting, implementing and enforcing the outcomes from these processes. Law and policy reform is essential to remove these barriers and create a framework for land use planning that deals honourably with Aboriginal Title and Rights. This law reform paper from West Coast Environmental Law first provides an historical overview of strategic land use planning in BC; second, highlights key considerations in reforming law and policy in this area; and finally, lays out recommended components of a new legal framework for land use planning.
Land use planning; strategic planning; Aboriginal; title and rights; ecosystem based management; co-management
West Coast Environmental Law