Nine Mi’kmaq communities in New Brunswick say they will not support to the proposed Energy East pipeline crossing their territory unless their concerns are meaningfully addressed.
Chief George Ginnish outlined those concerns at the National Energy Board hearings in Saint John this morning. Ginnish says the communities are worried about the impact the pipeline could have on watersheds and water crossings as well as on traditional fisheries and on species such as Atlantic salmon. “We have to consider the impact that any projects will have on our next seven generations. It’s our duty to our ancestors. Unless all of these concerns can be meaningfully addressed, we will not consent to the pipeline in our territory.”
Kenneth Francis of the Elsipogtog First Nation says opposing the pipeline is a matter of survival. “That pipeline coming through is an attack on our territory. It’s a total attack on our humanness.”
Officials with Energy East say they are committed to ongoing consultations with First Nations groups in order to address their concerns. Saint John is the first of nine cities where hearings will be held.