Indigenous Resource Network Opposes Liberal Government Emissions Cap Policy
September 19, 2022
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Calgary, AB – In July 2022, the federal government announced its emissions cap policy and released a Discussion Document to guide input on its plan to reduce emissions from the Canadian oil & gas sector by 42% by 2030. This emissions cap would leave many Indigenous communities economically devastated considering the Indigenous investments already made in existing projects. The Indigenous Resource Network is demanding the government change its emissions cap policy and more seriously consider the impact on Indigenous communities.
“Indigenous people were not properly consulted on this policy, and we feel that we have been left behind. This emissions cap would be very harmful to Indigenous communities that have successfully pursued ownership in oil and gas projects, and to the thousands of workers and businesses engaged in the sector” said Robert Merasty, executive director of the Indigenous Resource Network.
An emissions cap would cap Indigenous opportunities, and is unacceptable for the following reasons:
- It will have a detrimental economic impact to Indigenous communities, businesses and workers engaged in the oil and gas sector
- It was done without meaningfully consultation or consent of Indigenous peoples
- Generate higher global emissions by restricting LNG development, and compromise energy security and affordability around the world
Many of our Indigenous communities are currently developing energy projects that they plan to generate benefits and revenues from. The pathway to real self-determination is through these projects. “We are finally becoming owners of projects in our own territories, yet this policy seeks to restrict that” said Merasty. “This is taking us a step backwards in reconciliation”.
Canada’s proposed emissions cap policy directly contradicts the government’s promises on reconciliation and Indigenous self-determination, including respecting the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples. Not only do our communities deserve a chance to pursue economically viable projects on our own territory; we have a right to. The last thing we need is the government restricting what sectors we can and cannot benefit from.