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Open Letter from the Union of BC Indian Chiefs Supporting the Save the Fraser Declaration…


January 10, 2012

OPEN LETTER: The Union of BC Indian Chiefs fully supports the Save the Fraser Declaration, the Coastal First Nations Tanker Ban and the Indigenous laws banning Crude Oil Pipeline and Tanker Shipments through BC

Dear Premier Clark and Prime Minister Harper

We are writing with respect to Union of BC Indian Chiefs Resolution 2011-54, "Support for the Save the Fraser Declaration, the Coastal First Nations Tanker Ban and the Indigenous laws Banning Crude Oil Pipeline and Tanker Shipments through BC." which was presented, affirmed and endorsed by consensus at the UBCIC Chiefs Council on November 23rd, 2011.

The UBCIC Chiefs Council endorses the Coastal First Nations Tanker Ban and Save the Fraser Declaration that prohibit the transportation of crude oil by pipeline and tanker on the north and south coast and through the Fraser River watershed. As Indigenous Peoples, we continue to exercise our laws and jurisdiction to protect our lands, our waters, our coasts and our rivers, as we have done for thousands of years and both the Save the Fraser Declaration and the Coast First Nations Tanker Ban are grounded in our laws. Further, we draw your attention to the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples, which states:

Article 32:
1. Indigenous peoples have the right to determine and develop priorities and strategies for the development or use of their lands or territories and other resources
2. States shall consult and cooperate in good faith with the Indigenous peoples concerned through their own representative institutions in order to obtain their free and informed consent prior to the approval of any project affecting their lands or territories and other resources, particularly in connection with the development, utilization or exploitation of mineral, water or other resources.

We urge your governments to reject the proposed Enbridge pipeline and Kinder-Morgan pipeline and to respect the laws and authority of BC First Nations and ultimately to protect the environment, fisheries and health and safety of all BC communities.

On behalf of the UNION OF BC INDIAN CHIEFS

Grand Chief Stewart Phillip
President

Chief Robert Chamberlin
Vice-President

Chief Marilyn Baptiste
Secretary-Treasurer


For the PDF copy of the letter, along with the Union of BC Indian Chiefs Resolution 2011-54 and Save the Fraser Declaration, visit:
http://www.ubcic.bc.ca/files/PDF/SavetheFraserTankerBan_2011_54.pdf