Supreme Court rules in favor of West Moberly First Nations

By Christine Rumleskie



The West Moberly First Nations received some good news on Friday afternoon.

A Supreme Court Judge has ruled in favor of the First Nation’s group, in a dispute that stems over coal exploration in Burnt Caribou herd habitat.

Last year, Vancouver based First Coal received bulk-sample permits from the Ministry of Energy, Mine and Petroleum.

West Moberly Chief Rolland Willson says those permits were not to be given out in the first place.

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Willson says only 11 remaining caribou occupy the area near Chetwynd.

Earlier this year, members from West Moberly headed to Victoria to present their case to a B.C. Supreme Court Judge.

The First Nations group got the judge’s decision on Friday, which orders operations to be put-on-hold, and a recovery plan to be developed.

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Drilling in the area has now halted for 90 days. West Moberly First Nations will be working with the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Petroleum to develop a recovery plan.

Willson says he remains uncertain if an agreement can be reached that will benefit both First Coal and the caribou herd.


For First Coal’s take on this situation, click here.