The Squamish Nation Council announced that it had voted and approved three agreements regarding the Woodfibre LNG Project. The three agreements are with Woodfibre LNG Limited, FortisBC, and the Province of British Columbia. These agreements mean Squamish Nation has given approval for the Woodfibre LNG Project to proceed.
Woodfibre is a $1.6 billion project planned for the site of the old pulp mill in Squamish, which will process and liquefy natural gas shipped by pipeline from northern B.C. for export to Asian markets.
Similar to other levels of government that benefit economically from the project, the Squamish Nation as a government will share in the economic benefits this project offers. The agreements include annual and milestone payments totaling about $226 million, a cultural fund and cash for employment opportunities.
The Squamish Nation sought to ensure that the Nation’s environmental standards are being met. The project proponents are doing this by satisfying the Nation’s 25 environmental conditions issued under the Squamish Nation’s environmental assessment process.
Byng Giraud, vice president, corporate affairs, Woodfibre LNG Limited, said the company is pleased to have fulfilled another key condition of the project. “The Woodfibre LNG Project is the first industrial project to undergo Squamish Nation’s groundbreaking environmental assessment process – and is the first industrial project in Canada to be awarded an environmental certificate by an Indigenous government.”
Next steps will be holding the proponents accountable through the construction, operation and decommissioning of the Woodfibre LNG Project. This includes environmental, cultural, employment, and training conditions. As agreed by the proponents, the First Nation will be co-developing management plans for the project and will have its own monitors on the ground to report any non-compliance with the conditions.