The BC Mining Law Reform network and several of our member organizations have applied for intervenor status in the Gitxaała Nation’s groundbreaking legal case against the free-entry mineral claim staking process.
We’re in court on December 15 and 16 to argue for our right to speak to public interest issues surrounding the Mineral Tenure Act.
In the coming weeks, the Court will decide whether we will be allowed to make arguments during the legal proceedings, which are expected to be heard in April 2023.
Other members of the intervenor coalition include:
“Indigenous rights and conservation are interdependent. The Mineral Tenure Act allows for automatic approval of exploration claims, including in sensitive watersheds, valuable ecological areas, and First Nations’ territories, without any prior consideration of the potential negative impacts on the environment or community. This cannot continue.”Greg Knox, Executive Director of SkeenaWild Conservation Trust
“Our group came together around air quality concerns where one of the greatest threats was the Ajax mine being proposed within the city limits of Kamloops without any concern for city planning, private property, environmental impacts, or the rights of the Stk’emlúpsemc te Secwepemc Nation. The assessment process swallowed seven years of our energy as we ensured that our land, water, air and our children’s health were protected. We don’t want any community to go through what we did.”Gina Morris, spokesperson for Kamloops Moms for Clean Air
“The Mineral Tenure Act has infringed on the rights of many First Nations. We’ve also seen this with the Tŝilhqot’in’s fight against two mining projects on their unceded territories that culminated in a landmark Aboriginal Title case in the Supreme Court of Canada. How many times does this have to happen before B.C. finally updates the Act to support national reconciliation?”Wyatt Petryshen, Mining Policy and Impacts Researcher for Wildsight