The British Columbia government and the Kitselas First Nation have reached new agreements to ensure the nation receives direct benefits from the construction and operation of liquefied natural gas (LNG) export facilities on B.C.’s north coast.
The agreements provide benefits to the Kitselas First Nation based on specific steps in the development of a coastal LNG industry and reflect Kitselas support for an industry that is environmentally and socially responsible, and respectful of Aboriginal rights.
The Coastal Fund Benefits Agreement defines ongoing financial benefits for the Kitselas First Nation prior to and during export operations, including those linked to PNW LNG, LNG Canada and any additional LNG export facilities that may be built in the Prince Rupert or Kitimat areas.
Funding from these agreements will be used for:
- Community development projects and social initiatives;
- Investment in renewable energy projects and community energy planning;
- Education and skills training, in particular for Kitselas community members to participate in business or employment opportunities created by LNG projects; and
- Economic development, including investment that supports LNG development activities.
The PNW LNG project, located in the District of Port Edward, is pending a final investment decision by PETRONAS and its venture partners: Sinopec, JAPEX, Indian Oil Corporation and PetroleumBRUNEI. Collectively, this partnership is conducting a full evaluation of the PNW LNG project before any final investment decision is announced.
LNG Canada is a joint venture company comprised of Shell Canada Energy, an affiliate of Royal Dutch Shell plc, and affiliates of PetroChina, Korea Gas Corporation and Mitsubishi Corporation. The joint venture is proposing to build an LNG export facility near Kitimat.
John Rustad, Minister of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation –
“As the LNG industry on the north coast develops, these agreements and the support of Kitselas First Nation will help build stronger, healthier, more prosperous communities throughout the region.”
Rich Coleman, Minister of Natural Gas Development –
“Together, we are creating jobs and new economic opportunities that will deliver important benefits to the Kitselas First Nation. By diversifying our natural gas sector and shipping clean energy to Asia, government is creating a brighter future for all British Columbians and their families.”
Chief Joe Bevan, Kitselas First Nation –
“These agreements reflect Kitselas’ continued commitment to sustainable economic development in our territory and in B.C.’s Northwest. Together with our agreements with Pacific Northwest LNG and LNG Canada, they balance our stewardship responsibility for the lands and resources with the objective of participating in the economic future of B.C. Through the Reconciliation Agreement, we expect to grow our government-to-government relationship with the Province to one that is mature, respectful and wide reaching.”
Wan Badrul Hisham, chief project officer, Pacific Northwest LNG –
“I would like to commend the true leadership shown by Chief Bevan and council. For over four years, Pacific NorthWest LNG has enjoyed a respectful and productive relationship with the Kitselas First Nation, highlighted by the first Impact Benefit Agreement signed between PNW LNG and an area First Nation. Moving forward, we look forward to continuing the strong relationship and open dialogue with Chief Bevan, council and all members of the Kitselas First Nation.”
Kitselas LNG Benefits Agreement: http://ow.ly/BHxt30anRll
Coastal Fund Agreement: http://ow.ly/BHxt30anRll
Kitselas Reconciliation Agreement: http://ow.ly/BHxt30anRll
Benefits agreements with other First Nations: http://ow.ly/FHpL0
More about LNG in British Columbia: www.LNGinBC.ca
A backgrounder follows.