VICTORIA, B.C. – The provincial government sent out a release this morning in response to members of the Lax Kw’alaams Band on the North Coast voting in favour of continuing dialogue with LNG developers in their traditional territory.
Over 65 percent of the 812 votes cast in this week’s poll were supportive of their council continuing discussions with both the Province and LNG industry members, provided the environment is protected.
“The Government of British Columbia congratulates the Lax Kw’alaams Band for voting in support of continuing their discussions with us,” said Minister of Natural Gas Development Rich Coleman. “Pacific NorthWest LNG will create jobs and new economic opportunities for members of the Lax Kw’alaams and, collectively, we will ensure the export facility upholds the highest standards environmental protection.”
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To date, the provincial government has signed 62 natural gas Pipeline Benefit Agreements with 29 First Nations regarding LNG proposals in British Columbia.
The positive vote followed a series of community forums conducted by the band’s council. During these sessions, band members reviewed the Pacific NorthWest LNG proposal, the opportunities associated with LNG development, and plans for environmental protection and monitoring.
The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency is currently reviewing the Pacific NorthWest LNG proposal, with a decision expected in the near future. Malaysian-based Petronas, which is a major backer of the proposal, has already announced a conditional final investment decision and plans to review all elements of their facility following a verdict by the federal government.