Forestry

The Wolastoqey have a proven Aboriginal domestic timber harvesting right as a result of the Supreme Court of Canada’s decision in R v Sappier; R v Gray. The Crown also has a legal duty to consult and accommodate the Wolastoqey about forestry decisions that have a potential to affect Wolastoqey Aboriginal and Treaty Rights.

The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick provides technical advice to the Wolastoqey Communities regarding potential impacts to Wolastoqey domestic timber harvesting rights and other Aboriginal and Treaty Rights from forestry decisions and activities. The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick is currently supporting the Wolastoqey Communities in discussions with the Government of New Brunswick about how provincial forestry management and rules interfere with Wolastoqey Aboriginal and Treaty Rights, how Wolastoqey domestic timber harvesting rights can be implemented, how the Government of New Brunswick can consult and accommodate on forestry, and how concerns with commercial harvesting can be addressed.

For more information, please contact Angie Paul, Forestry and Crown Land Coordinator at angie.paul@wolastoqey.ca

Fisheries

The Wolastoqey hold both Aboriginal and Treaty Rights to fish for food, social, and ceremonial purposes and commercial purposes within Wolastoqey Territory. Multiple court decisions confirm that the Wolastoqey have commercial fishing rights under the Treaties of 1725 (ratified in 1726), 1749 and 1760. The courts have also held that the Wolastoqey have Aboriginal Rights to fish, which are inherent rights and independent of the Treaties.

The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick provides technical advice to Wolastoqey Communities on projects that have the potential to impact Wolastoqey fishing rights (both food, social and ceremonial and commercial fishing rights) to help protect these rights, including in the context of Crown fisheries decisions. Some of the major fisheries projects currently being reviewed by the Wolastoqey Communities on behalf of the Wolastoqey Communities include:

  • the design and management of improved fish passage at the Mactaquac Dam and other barriers on the Wolastoq; 
  • science and technical support to Wolastoqey Communities on the Sisson Mine Project; 
  • consultation on the impacts of Marine Protected Areas and other projects in the ocean environment; 
  • and many other projects that affect freshwater and marine fisheries.

WNNB also supports the Wolastoqey Communities through ongoing fisheries negotiations and discussions with federal and provincial governments.

For more information, please contact Dr. Colin Curry, Fisheries Biologist at colin.curry@wolastoqey.ca

Land and Resource Use Studies

Land and Resource Use Studies are often completed as part of an environmental review of a proposed project in order to clearly demonstrate how the proposed project will impact Wolastoqey land use-based rights such as hunting, fishing, cutting wood, harvesting of plants along with occupation (such as camps, trails and travelways, spiritual sites, etc.). Recommendations are then typically presented based on the Land and Resource Use Study for how to mitigate (lessen or eliminate) impacts on rights. The objectives of Land and Resource Use Studies are to:

  • provide a brief overview of available information outlining historic Wolastoqey land and resource use within a proposed project area  
  • present an overview of current barriers to Wolastoqey land and resource use in Wolastoqey Territory and within a proposed project area  
  • describe current Wolastoqey land and resource use in Wolastoqey Territory and within a proposed project area  
  • discuss how a proposed project may impact current Wolastoqey land and resource use within a proposed project area  
  • provide recommendations on how to limit impacts of a proposed project on current Wolastoqey land and resource use within a proposed project area 

For more information, please contact Gillian Paul, Interim Consultation Director/Legal and Governance Advisor at gillian.paul@wolastoqey.ca

Environmental Assessments

An environmental assessment is the decision-making process used by federal and provincial governments to assess potential adverse environmental effects of proposed energy and natural resource development projects before they decide whether to allow the project to proceed.

Environmental assessments often concern energy and natural resource development projects that stand to adversely effect on Aboriginal and Treaty Rights, and in such cases, the assessment should always carefully consider impacts on Aboriginal and Treaty Rights, and whether those impacts can be avoided, mitigated, offset or addressed through compensation. Environmental assessment processes are also often relied on by federal and provincial governments to fulfill portions of their duty to consult and accommodate. As such, the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick often provides technical support and advice to the Wolastoqey Communities in environmental assessments to ensure that the Crown considers the impacts of proposed energy and natural resource development projects on Wolastoqey Aboriginal and Treaty Rights and fulfills its duty to consult with and accommodate the Wolastoqey.In the Province of New Brunswick, environmental assessments are known as Environmental Impact Assessments and are undertaken under the Environmental Impact Assessment Act. The federal environmental assessment process is known as an Impact Assessment and are undertaken under the Impact Assessment Act.

Some environmental assessments currently being reviewed by the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick on behalf of the Wolastoqey Communities include:

  • Upham East Gypsum Quarry Project
  • Sisson Mine – permitting process and EIA Conditions 
  • Sagewill Limestone Quarry
  • Amkis Sand Pit – Not an EIA Project
  • Mactaquac Dam refurbishment – Pre-EIA
  • Scott Falls Dam decommissioning – Pre-EIA
  • Milltown Dam decommissioning – Pre-EIA
  • NB Power transmission lines – (Fundy Isles, Rainsford Line, Kedgewick, and Houlton)
  • Madawaska-Edmundston International Bridge
  • Coles Island Bridge – EIA conditions
  • Bay du Nord Development Project 
  • 10 proposed Offshore Newfoundland Exploration Projects (Eastern Newfoundland, Flemish Pass, CNOOC, Husky Energy, Orphan Basin, West Flemish Pass, Central Ridge, Tiltcove, BHP, and South Eastern Newfoundland)
  • Deep Panuke and Sable Offshore Energy Project decommissioning – Conditions
  • Chipman Wastewater Treatment Facility Replacement – EIA Conditions
  • Nicholson’s Waste Management – EIA Conditions
  • Hanwell School
  • Wocawson Wind Farm – EIA Conditions
  • Port of Saint John – Not an EIA Project

For more information, please contact Gordon Grey, EIA Coordinator at gordon.grey@wolastoqey.ca

Archaeology

The Wolastoqiyik have a sacred responsibility and obligation to ensure respect for and protection of their archaeological resources. The right of the Wolastoqiyik to safeguard their archaeological resources is a right that is protected by section 35 of the Constitution Act, 1982. The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick provides technical advice to the Wolastoqey Communities regarding potential impacts to Wolastoqey archaeological resources and will be soon be starting discussions with the Government of New Brunswick to establish processes for the identification, conservation and protection of Wolastoqey archaeological resources. 

For more information, please contact Gillian Paul, Interim Consultation Director/Legal and Governance Advisor at gillian.paul@wolastoqey.ca

Crown Lands

The Wolastoqiyik have occupied the lands and waters of what is now known as New Brunswick since time immemorial. The Peace and Friendship treaties the Wolastoqey are signatories to did not involve the surrender of land, waters or resources. However, over the past centuries, Wolastoqey lands, waters, and resources have been increasingly appropriated by third parties, exploited, contaminated, depleted, and regulated to the point where the ability to exercise Wolastoqey Aboriginal and Treaty rights is in serious jeopardy. The ability of the Wolastoqey to feed families and earn a livelihood from harvesting the natural resources on Wolastoqey territory is seriously diminished, and it has become increasingly hard for the Wolastoqey to practice cultural and spiritual traditions and transmit these to the youth. As such, the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick takes all Crown land transactions in Wolastoqey Territory seriously.

The Province of New Brunswick oversees land transactions relating to provincial Crown land. Crown land transactions are generally in the form of Leases, Licences of Occupation, Crown Reserve Roads, and Land Exchanges and Disposals. The Province of New Brunswick sends notification of proposed Crown land transactions to the Wolastoqey Communities prior to approval. The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick provides technical advice to the Wolastoqey Communities on how the proposed transaction could potentially impact Wolastoqey Aboriginal and Treaty Rights.

For more information, please contact Angie Paul, Forestry and Crown Land Coordinator at angie.paul@wolastoqey.ca

Legislative and Policy Review

The Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick provides technical advice to the Wolastoqey Communities on how legislation and policy can better consider and protect Aboriginal and Treaty Rights. Current legislative reviews the Wolastoqey Nation in New Brunswick is assisting the Wolastoqey Communities with include:

  • Impact Assessment Act
  • Fisheries Act 
  • Navigable Waters Protection Act 
  • Canadian Energy Regulator Act 
  • New Brunswick Climate Change Action Plan
  • A Water Strategy for New Brunswick

For more information, please contact Gillian Paul, Interim Consultation Director/Legal and Governenace Advisor at gillian.paul@wolastoqey.ca or Gordon Grey, EIA Coordinator at gordon.grey@wolastoqey.ca