North Island MLA Claire Trevena has said First Nations have to be involved when dealing with industry in their traditional territories.
Trevena challenged the Minister in Question Period in the Legislature after the diesel spill from a fish farm near Echo Bay left a massive slick on the ocean.
“This is their traditional territory and they have not given social license for the farms to operate,” said Trevena. “The First Nations are running their own response team and they are seriously worried about the impact this spill will have.”
The farm apparently left a pump running which allowed the diesel to spill. While the company has apologized and said it will learn from the accident, First Nations in the area say that is not good enough.
“The Minister has not given any assurances that First Nations will be involved in future planning for either industry in their territories or in the worst case, the clean up,” said Trevena.
The BC Liberals have boasted ‘world class’ clean up capabilities but the Minister acknowledged that more than 24 hours after the spill, diesel was still on the surface of the water and the slick was 3km long.