ALASKA HIGHWAY NEWS – LNG job opportunities eliminate poverty in First Nation

Alaska Highway News
December 18, 2015 06:59 AM

It’s becoming more common to pick up a newspaper or see a news article online speaking about job opportunities that could be available for First Nations in BC as a result of LNG development — but it wasn’t always that way.

There was a time when the Kitselas First Nation said no to all natural resource development projects that would require use of our traditional territories. We regarded ourselves as wards of the state and stewards of the land, and rather than attempting to manage the proposed projects and discuss economic opportunities, we chose to not engage. As a result, our nation experienced an 80 per cent unemployment rate. This was a hard time for our people as it was difficult to find jobs that were local and reflected the skills our people possessed.

After some time, we started asking ourselves: what would happen if we said yes to even one of these projects? Our biggest concerns were educating our members on the facts behind LNG and our terms and agreements not being upheld. There was so much misinformation being shared online we wanted to ensure our people received an unbiased perspective on LNG before making a decision, so we brought in a third party expert. When we began the process, only one third of our people were in favour of considering these projects, and after hearing the facts, two thirds of our people were on board. We then realized we could protect ourselves if we put our conditions in a legally binding agreement that had to be honoured. It was at that point, we finally said yes to starting conversations with 20-some proponents.

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THE TELEGRAPH – Children kept indoors as smog blankets Beijing

By Neil Connor, and Claire Lomas

4:57PM GMT 01 Dec 2015

Workplaces closed and schools allow children to stay at home on another day of heavy pollution in Beijing.

Hundreds of factories were shutdown by authorities and children were allowed to miss school on the third day of a heavy bout of pollution which shrouded Beijing, as China takes centre stage at the Paris climate change talks.

Education officials took the rare move of allowing children to stay at home as a thick blanket of smog, that was more than 25 times above health guidelines, covered a large swathe of northern China.

Video: Children kept indoors as smog blankets Beijing – Telegraph

The worst episode of smog to hit the Chinese capital this year began on Friday but was declared an ‘orange alert’ on Sunday, which forces factories and construction sites to shut down.

Levels of dangerous tiny particles known as PM 2.5, which can embed themselves deep in the lungs, reached 634 micrograms per cubic metre at 2pm – far exceeding the World Health Organization safe level of 25.

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