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Statement by Minister of Natural Resources Linda Jeffrey on Bill 191, The Far North Act

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Statement by Minister of Natural Resources Linda Jeffrey on Bill 191, The Far North Act

Ministry of Natural Resources and Forestry

The future of Ontario's Far North is in our hands.  The decisions and actions we take now will have a lasting impact on the Far North's environment and its people for generations to come.   It is up to us to ensure that the effect is positive and makes a difference to the health and prosperity of those who live there.

Bill 191, the Far North Act, is an unprecedented opportunity to initiate progress and positive change in the Far North of Ontario - change that is truly based on working together with the people who live there.

Since becoming Minister of Natural Resources I have carefully listened to, and learned from, the people who are most touched by this proposed legislation, the First Nations in the Far North.

One thing is clear - First Nations want to participate in the planning process and help determine where lands are developed.

I believe that Bill 191 could benefit First Nations in many ways:

  • It would strengthen the working relationship between Ontario and First Nations in the Far North - one built on working together and shared goals.
  • It would give First Nations a joint leadership role with Ontario in land use planning.
  • It sets the stage for carefully managed sustainable resource development of the Far North's rich mineral, forestry and green energy potential.
The government's Far North initiative also places Ontario among world leaders in boreal protection while making one of the largest land protection commitments in North America to fight global climate change.

It is our obligation as global citizens to make responsible land use decisions for this vast and unique part of the province and the world.  Bill 191 represents a vision for the Far North of Ontario that is right for the environment, right for the economy, right for First Nations in the Far North, and right for the people of Ontario.

Facts About Bill 191, Far North Act, 2010

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