In the past decade there has been an accelerated development of resource and land use in Canada’s north. Not surprisingly, there are also significant political, legal and regulatory developments unfolding in the region, including devolution of resource development responsibilities and oversight.
As resource and land use development moves forward, there is much at stake and decisions and actions taken today must weigh longer term, as well as short term consequences. Balancing economic development and long-term environmental, social and sustainability targets is not an easy task to accomplish. Consultation and other processes are evolving to help achieve these objects. But much more work needs to be done.
An important inaugural conference is being held on May 27-28 at the Explorer Hotel in Yellowknife NT to discuss these developments and their impacts. The conference hosted by Insight Information, is entitled North of 60: Aboriginal Land and Resource Development, and it will provide up-to-date reports on the challenges and the strategies for moving responsibly forward.
The conference will kick off with a day of pre-conference workshops on May 26. The topic of the morning workshop is Negotiating and Drafting Key Agreements in Aboriginal Resource Development and it will be presented by Krista Robertson, Associate with Janes Freeman Kyle Law Corporation.
The topic of the afternoon workshop is Financial and Tax Essentials in First Nations Land and Resource Development – Revenue Sharing, Equity Participation, Financial Governance Structures and More. The afternoon workshop will be delivered by J. M. Alain Chiasson, Partner with McLellan Ross LLP.
The in-depth format of both these workshops will allow for participants to ask questions, share information and discuss issues that relate to their specific organizations.
On May 27, following welcoming remarks, an opening keynote address will be given at 9:15 am by Dene National Chief and (Tentative) Regional AFN Chief Bill Erasmus. The topic of his address is Resource Development in Canada’s North – A Win Win for Indigenous Peoples?
At 9:45 a Keynote Presentation will be delivered by Cathy Towtongie, President of Nunavut Tunngavic Inc. (NTI) and the topic will be Aboriginal Self Government and Responsible Resource Management.
A special address will follow at 10:30 on The Peel Watershed Region Land Use Plan – Report, Issues and Implications, delivered by Norman Snowshoe, Vice President of the Gwich’in Tribal Council.
The morning comes to a close with a panel presentation at 11 am on Energy Developments in the Far North – Reports and a Glance at the Road Ahead. Panel members are Gaétan Caron
Chair and CEO of the National Energy Board of Canada and John J.P. Donihee, Counsel Willms Shier LLP. The panel moderator is Garth Wallbridge Principal, Wallbridge Law Office.
After a networking luncheon, the afternoon agenda starts with a Keynote address by David Ramsay NWT Minister for Industry, Tourism and Investment. His topic is Devolution and New Territorial Oversight of Resource Development. Minister Ramsay’s address is followed by a presentation on How can Leadership Accountability be Tied into Succession Outcomes, Analytics and Pay? presented by Ethel Blondin-Andrew, Chairperson of Sahtu Secretariat Incorporated and Fred Talen, Director of Negotiations, NWT Department of Aboriginal Affairs and Intergovernmental Relations.
At 3 pm there will be a session on Land and Resource Boards in the NWT, Nunavut and Yukon, delivered by Willard Hagen, Chair and CEO of the Mackenzie Valley Land and Water Board; Ryan Barry, Executive Director of the Nunavut Impact Review Board; and Stephen Mills, Chair of the Yukon Environmental and Socio-economic Assessment Board.
At 4:15 a presentation will be given by Krista Robertson, Associate, Janes Freeman Kyle Law Corporation on Consultation Update in Resource Development – Progress to Date. Her presentation will be followed by the Closing Address for the day by YT Deputy Minister of Economic Development, Murray Arsenault. His topic is Pan-Northern Economic Development – Retaining Opportunities in the North.
Following the opening remarks on May 28, a case study will be presented on Economic Development Corporations in the Far North, delivered by Jasper Lamouelle, President of Tlicho Investment Corporation.
At 10 am an address will be given on Mining Developments and Opportunities North of 60, presented by Tli Cho Grand Chief Edward Erasmus; Gary Vivian (Aurora Geosciences Ltd.) Vice President of the NWT and Yukon Chamber of Mines; and Garth Wallbridge, Principal of Wallbridge Law Office.
Their presentation will be followed by a session on Consultation Requirements for Mining in the North, delivered by Janet Vander Meer, Lands Coordinator for White River First Nation and Cynthia Westaway, Counsel, Regional Leader Aboriginal Law and Team North from Borden Ladner Gervais LLP.
Following a networking luncheon at 1:30 pm there will be a Special Address on Human Resources Capacity Building for Sustainable Resource Development, presented by Kelly Arychuk, VP of Mine Support Services, Victoria Gold Corp.
At 2:15 pm a presentation will provided on Infrastructure Developments and Opportunities for Northern Economic Growth, delivered by Jayleen Robertson, Director Planning, Policy and Environment for the NWT Department of Transportation (invited); and Mark Walker, Vice-President, Business Markets with NWTel.
At 3:15 pm a session will be held on Oil and Gas Licensing and Related Regulatory Oversight in the Northwest Territories, delivered by Deborah Archibald, NWTADM for Industry, Tourism and Investment; and Paul Dixon, Executive Director of the Sahtu Land and Water Board.
The final address for the day is at 4 pm on Financing Aboriginal Equity Participation in Resource Projects, presented by William Laurin, VP and General Counsel for Native American Resource Partners.
For more information about this important conference, visit insightInfo.com/Northof60 and when registering be sure to use your priority code ANN958.