The Peace River is the foundation of a major watershed in northeastern BC. It lies within the territories of Treaty 8 First Nations. The 39 Nations who are signatories to Treaty 8 are part of the Sicannie (Sikanni), Slavey, Beaver (Dunne-za), Cree, Saulteau, Dene and Mechif linguistic groups.
The BC Utilities Commission is in the middle of its review of the Site C dam. They released their interim report on Sept 20, which criticized BC Hydro for failing to provide relevant and supportable materials and raised numerous questions about the project. The BCUC is currently touring B.C. and asking for public input, which will be incorporated into their final report on November 1.
This is a big opportunity to make it known that Site C is bad for B.C., and that residents don’t want to pay $9 billion to destroy an important and beautiful river valley for energy we don’t need.
Please share your input in writing or in person at one of eleven Community Input Sessions. To register to speak, go to this page of the BCUC website, and click “Register” next to the location nearest you.
Here are BCUC’s speaker guidelines for the sessions.
We have set up Facebook pages as a place to share ideas, carpool and plan for the sessions. Click on the link below to go to the Facebook page for the event nearest you. Please share with your friends.
Keep an eye on these pages for more information about how to participate and collaborate with others in your community.
The BCUC is most interested in the economic impacts and cost to BC Hydro ratepayers, so the more you can share about how this project will affect your pocketbook, the better! Here’s a fact sheet of talking points to help.
February 11, 2016
Organizations from across Canada are urging Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to take immediate action to halt construction of the Site C dam in northeastern British Columbia
In an open letter released today, more than 25 organizations, including Amnesty International, the David Suzuki Foundation, and Sierra Club BC, denounced the project for violation of rights protected under Treaty 8, the Canadian Constitution, and international human rights law.
Although promoted by the government of BC as a “clean” source of renewable energy, the joint federal-provincial environmental impact assessment panel concluded that the Site C dam would severely and permanently undermine Indigenous peoples’ use of the land and destroy important cultural sites and a unique ecosystem.
“As we said in the letter, this is not just another resource development project,” said Candace Batycki, spokesperson for the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative, one of the signatory organizations. “The Site C dam is one of the largest resource development projects underway in Canada and its impact on the environment and local First Nations will be severe. Given the review panel’s findings, it’s alarming that it was approved in the first place.”
The letter calls on the federal government to rescind all permits related to the construction of the dam and to review the previous government’s decision to approve the project despite its impact on Treaty rights.
Maude Barlow, National Chairperson of the Council of Canadians said, “Prime Minister Trudeau and his government made a clear public commitment to building a new relationship with Indigenous peoples based on respect for the Treaties, the Constitution, and international human rights law. If it intends to keep that promise, the federal government needs to take immediate, decisive action on Site C.”
Jennifer Henry, Executive Director of KAIROS said, “Reconciliation requires a definitive change from the treatment of Indigenous peoples that has already caused so much harm. As Canadians concerned about social justice and the environment, we are calling on Prime Minister Trudeau and his government to make it clear that respect for Treaty rights will not be sacrificed.”
Joe Foy, Wilderness Committee, said, “During the recent climate change negotiations in Paris, Canada was clear that ‘clean energy’ requires respect for both human rights and the environment. We’re asking that they put these principles into practice at home.”
For media inquiries, please contact:
Amnesty International Canada
416-363-9933 ext 332
National Campaign Director,
Program Director, BC and Yukon
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
Read the letter here: Letter to PM – Nothing Clean About Site C Dam – Joint Letter Feb 2016
The letter was signed by:
Alliance 4 Democracy
The Anglican Eco-Justice Unit, Diocese of New Westminster
Amnesty International Canada
Blue Planet Project
BC Women’s Institute
Burnaby Residents Opposing Kinder Morgan Expansion – BROKE
Canadian Federation of Students
Canadian Friends Service Committee (Quakers)
Council of Canadians
Christian Peacemakers Team, Indigenous Peoples Solidarity Project
Coalition of Progressive Electors (COPE) Vancouver
Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society (CPAWS)
David Suzuki Foundation
KAIROS: Canadian Ecumenical Justice Initiatives
Peace Valley Environment Association
Peace Valley Landowner Association
RAVEN (Respecting Aboriginal Values and Environmental Needs)
Skeena Wild Conservation Trust
Sierra Club BC
West Coast Environmental Law
Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative
Featured image by Larry Peterson
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 18, 2015
VICTORIA—A coalition of environmental groups today called on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to keep the proposed Site C dam out of Canada’s climate strategy to be presented at the Paris climate talks later in November.
“We ask that the federal government recognize that Site C is not a climate solution, and that it not give support to the B.C. government in Paris regarding Site C,” said the letter, addressed to the Prime Minister and members of the climate committee chaired by Stephane Dion. “When combined with strong opposition from Treaty 8 First Nations, and international concern over impacts to the Wood Buffalo National Park, Canada’s support for this megaproject would interfere with achieving many of the goals you have set for your government and the country.”
The letter described Site C as a “net contributor to climate change” through direct emissions, loss of carbon sinks, and indirect emissions caused by using hydro electricity from Site C to facilitate fracking and LNG development, whose climate pollution is comparable to coal. Site C would also “significantly hamper any meaningful attempts to increase food security resilience and adaptation to climate change,” the letter said.
The letter was signed by the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, Peace Valley Environment Association, Peace Valley Landowners’ Association, Sierra Club BC, the Wilderness Committee and the Yellowstone to Yukon Conservation Initiative.
“Climate change is hitting us with extreme weather, and already we’re seeing a loss of agricultural production in south-western US, on which we depend for our food imports,” said Sierra Club BC campaigner Ana Simeon. “Peace Valley farmland is capable of providing fruits and vegetables for one million people. Northern lands like the Peace Valley can play a crucial role in making sure that Canadians can affordably feed ourselves despite disruptions in world food supply. Building megaprojects on prime agricultural land is the opposite of a credible climate strategy.”
Read the open letter here: www.sierraclub.bc.ca/Site-C-Letter-Trudeau
Ana Simeon, Peace Valley Campaigner: (778) 433-2934
Tim Pearson, Communications Director: (250) 896-1556