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Media Advisory - Coastal First Nations to release oil spill commercial reminding British Columbians of Dangers of Oil Tankers

March 22, 2013

Media Advisory

Released on the 24th anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill, powerful television commercial features music by famous American singer-songwriter.

VANCOUVER, BRITISH COLUMBIA--(Marketwire - March 22, 2013) - Attention News Editors: Media are invited to a brief media screening and Q&A session with Art Sterritt, Executive Director of the Coastal First Nations, for a new oil spill television commercial being released on the anniversary of the Exxon Valdez oil spill (March 24).

The commercial features the music of a famous American singer-songwriter, and high-resolution copies will be made available to media on USB flash drives.

Who: Art Sterritt, Executive Director of the Coastal First Nations

When: Sunday, March 24, 2013 at 1:00pm

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Great Bear Forest Carbon Project

March 11, 2013

In the Great Bear Forest Carbon Project video members of the Coastal FIrst Nations are interviewed on why the project is so important to them.

Only one place on Earth is h ome to ancient cedars, towering spruce, cougars, wolves, grizzlies, salmon, and the iconic Kermode, or Spirit Bear, which gives its name to the region. at 6.4 million hectares, the Great Bear Rainforest is the largest intact coastal temperate rainforest in the world. For thousands of years First Nations on Canada's west coast have sourced life, culture and heritage from this environment. Today, the Great Bear Rainforest is such a global rarity that it has inspired unconventional partnerships, visionary leadership, and a radical change in the way we manage our resources.

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Coastal First Nations pull out of this week's Northern Gateway Pipeline Joint Review Panel hearings

February 4, 2013


(Prince Rupert, BC) February 4, 2013 – Coastal First Nations can’t afford to participate in this week’s Joint Review Panel (JRP) on the proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline in Prince Rupert.

 This is a David and Goliath scenario, said Art Sterritt. “It seems the only party that can afford this long and extended hearing process is Enbridge and, perhaps, the Federal Government. The average citizen can’t afford to be here and the Coastal First Nations cannot afford to be here.”

Sterritt, the executive director of the Coastal First Nations, said pulling out was a difficult decision because the Emergency Response Panel is dealing with important issues. “We planned to ask questions that included: does diluted bitumen sink; how quickly can a spill be responded to and how effective can cleanup be; how long will spilled oil remain in the ecosystem and what are the costs of a spill cleanup and who will pay.”

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Great Bear Forest Carbon Project offers a new, prosperous future for Coastal First Nations

January 22, 2013

As discussion around complex and important issues like comprehensive claims, treaty implementation and Idle No More continues, positive economic development initiatives taking place in First Nations communities are moving forward.

The Coastal First Nations have spent the last decade building a sustainable economy. What might surprise many is that First Nations on BC’s Central and North Coast and Haida Gwaii are quietly emerging as leaders in the sales of carbon credits. The Great Bear Forest Carbon Project offers Coastal First Nations the potential for sustainable economic and social development while helping to conserve the largest and most ecologically significant temperate rainforest in the world.

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Coastal First Nations to Share Resource Stewardship Experiences with Indigenous Rangers in Northern Australia

September 27, 2012

Wally Webber (Nuxalk), David Leask (Metlakatla) and Claire Hutton (Coastal Stewardship Network Coordinator) are on their way to northern Australia to attend the Northern Australia Indigenous Land and Sea Alliance (NAILSMA) I-Tracker Forum. The Forum brings together Indigenous land and sea managers and researchers to strengthen networks and share experiences in resource management and monitoring.

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Coastal First Nations accuse Enbridge of underestimating oil spill risks

September 21, 2012

(Vancouver, September 21, 2012) - Coastal First Nations’ lawyer Brenda Gaertner accused Enbridge of underestimating oil tanker spills on BC’s coast.

Gaertner, of Mandell Pinder, asked Enbridge’s “experts” at the Joint Review Panel hearing in Edmonton why they claim there would be only one tanker spill every 250 years.  “Based on the US government’s Oil Spill Risk Model there could be a tanker spill on average once every 6-12 years.”

She also accused Enbridge of underestimating pipeline spills.  Gaertner pointed to Enbridge’s actual spill statistics records of an average of 60 spills per year.  Based on this record, the Northern Gateway oil pipeline would have 46 pipeline spills every 4 years.  “Enbridge’s submission claims only 1 spill every 4 years. Enbridge has had an average of 60 spills per year from 1998 to 2010 and its rate of spills has shown no decline despite Enbridge’s repeated commitment to reduce spills.”

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Coastal First Nations slam Enbridge for lack of consultation at JRP hearings

September 19, 2012

 (Vancouver, Sept. 19, 2012) – The Coastal First Nations says consultation on Enbridge’s proposed Northern Gateway Project has been an utter failure.

Art Sterritt, the executive director of Coastal First Nations, said the Federal Government is relying largely on the pathetic efforts of Enbridge to consult with First Nations.  “There has been a lack of proper and adequate consultation with us to learn what our concerns are with the project and its potential impacts on our member First Nations.”

Enbridge has steadfastly refused to provide sufficient information to our many requests on the feasibility of safety measures related to its proposed project, Sterritt said. “We are surprised by Enbridge’s responses and are particularly concerned with how Enbridge continues to downplay the risks of spills in their cost benefit analysis.  Their numbers defy common sense and are inconsistent with Enbridge's poor track record.”

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Coastal First Nations declare ban on trophy hunting in Central and North Coast

September 12, 2012

(Klemtu, BC, September 12, 2012) First Nations on BC’s North and Central Coast have declared a ban on the trophy bear hunt in their traditional territories. "We will protect bears from cruel and unsustainable trophy hunts by any and all means,” said Kitasoo/Xaixais First Nation Chief Doug Neasloss.

The trophy bear hunt is an issue that has been brewing in First Nations communities for several years, said Neasloss. "Despite years of effort by the Coastal First Nations to find a resolution to this issue with the Province this senseless and brutal trophy hunt continues.”

It’s not unreasonable to expect that in the Great Bear Rainforest all bears would flourish, he said. “Unfortunately, trophy hunting continues to be permitted in the majority of Great Bear Rainforest, including its protected areas and conservancies.”

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Heiltsuk Nation vows to continue fight to stop Enbridge

September 5, 2012

By Chief Marilyn Slett

Sept. 5, 2012

Enbridge is in for a rough ride as the final phase of the Joint Review Panel’s public hearings on its proposed Northern Gateway Pipeline begins this week. This is the stage when interveners can challenge any claims made by Enbridge.

The JRP panel is going to hear about the evidence that is already on the record and test Enbridge’s claims. It’s the expectation of the Heiltsuk Nation that the information that the panel is going to use will inform its final decision to reject the pipeline project. The compelling evidence presented against the need for the pipeline and increased oil tankers on the coast will be no doubt countered by Enbridge’s pie in the sky ideas on the so called benefits of the project.

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Coastal First Nations supports NDP plan for “Made in BC” review process to protect our interests

August 22, 2012

Vancouver (Wednesday, August 22, 2012) – The Coastal First Nations unequivocally supports the NDP’s plan to establish a “made in BC” Northern Gateway Project review process.

 Art Sterritt, executive director of the Coastal First Nations, said the Province needs to see some bold leadership in BC and the leader of the opposition Adrian Dix is providing it. “First Nations and all British Columbians have been waiting for the Liberal government to provide leadership on this issue and they have steadfastly failed at every turn.”

Sterritt said the current National Energy Board review process is seriously flawed. “Enbridge is not respecting First Nations’ Aboriginal Rights and Title which includes meaningful consultation and prior informed consent for the project.”

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