The award-winning documentary “Fractured Land” follows the life of First Nations warrior and lawyer, Caleb Behn as he explores the impacts hydraulic fracturing is having on his community. It will soon be aired on the Knowledge Network. I had an opportunity to ask filmmaker Damien Gillis, What’s behind the documentary Fractured Land?
The Canadian and British Columbian governments may wish to ignore perceived treaty violations of the Site C Dam project, but this determined group of people will not let them. Their bus left Ken and Arlene Boon’s farm, in the Peace River Valley, Monday. They want to be present when a Federal judge hears the West Moberly and Prophet River First Nations argue that this BC Hydro project infringes on their constitutionally protected rights to hunt, fish and trap the lands that will be submerged. The Treaty 8 Justice for the Peace Caravan will arrive in Montreal Sunday.
British Columbia’s regulatory accounts have been receiving a lot of attention lately. Business Vancouver compared them to a shell game, in which expenses are deferred to the future so that the government can report “profits.” Vaughn Palmer writes that the province has “cumulative long-term obligations amount to $102 billion, with Hydro accounting for the bulk of them.” The item that really caught my eye was $50 billion for electricity BC does not need.
The controversial Site C Dam project was rejected twice (back in the 1980s and 90s), before Premier Christy Clark’s government decided to go over the heads of provincial agencies like the BC utilities Commission and Agricultural Land Commission. Prime Minister Stephen Harper’s government issued the necessary permits to start construction during the last Federal election. As Treaty 8 gave local First Nations use of the land this project will submerge, it seems likely that a treaty is being broken. Despite all of this, BC Hydro began what many view as the environmental destruction of the Site C Peace River Valley. Since then a new Canadian government has been elected. They spoke of the need for social license and promised a new era of respect for indigenous peoples. Will The Feds Intervene On Site C?
There has been marked opposition to the proposed Site C dam since the B.C. Public Utilities Commission turned this Peace River project down more than thirty years ago. Dr. Harry Swain, former Chair of the Site C Joint Review Panel, and Richard Bullock, former Chair of the Agricultural Land Commission (ALC), have become some of the project’s most outspoken critics. Peace Valley Landowner Association President Ken Boon recently informed Canada’s new government of this, when he asked for their help, but Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has yet to intervene on Site C .