First Nation Begins Land Use Planning Process
Webequie and Ontario Working Together on a Community-Based Land Use Plan
Webequie First Nation has become the fourth community in the Ring of Fire area to reach an agreement with Ontario to work together on a community-based land use plan.
The First Nation community hosted two open houses this week to launch the planning process and a signing ceremony for the Terms of Reference was held today in Webequie.
Land use planning identifies areas that are suitable and capable for resource development (forestry, mining, renewable energy) and land that is designated for protection. The plan will help create jobs and build economic growth to benefit First Nations and Ontario while protecting areas of cultural and ecological value.
Working collaboratively with First Nations is part of the government's economic plan to invest in people, build modern infrastructure and support a dynamic business climate.
- Five First Nation communities have completed community-based land use plans: Pikangikum, Cat Lake, Slate Falls, Pauingassi and Little Grand Rapids.
- Six additional First Nation communities completed Terms of Reference in the last 18 months: Marten Falls, Eabametoong and Mishkeegogamang, Deer Lake, Wawakapewin and Constance Lake First Nations.
- Almost all First Nation communities in the Far North have engaged with Ontario in the early stages of preparing a community-based land use plan.
- Learn more about the Far North Planning Initiative.
“Ontario is pleased to be taking another step forward with Webequie First Nation in community-based land use planning, which includes planning for the resource-rich area known as the Ring of Fire. This agreement marks a critical milestone in our partnership that is bringing together the knowledge and experience of the community with our information and expertise to help make informed land use decisions in the Far North. We look forward to continuing to build upon the positive relationship between Webequie and Ontario.”
“Today’s announcement further strengthens the relationship between Webequie First Nation and the province. It’s another example of how our government is working closely with First Nation communities across Ontario to build relationships based on mutual respect and create jobs and economic opportunities while protecting the land and its resources.”
“Our government is committed to ensuring that First Nations are full partners in the community-based land use planning process for the Far North of Ontario. This latest agreement with Webequie First Nation is yet another positive step forward and an indication of their confidence in the process that we have worked so hard to establish.”
“We’re looking forward to working in partnership with the Ontario government on land use planning in a manner that respects our Aboriginal and Treaty rights, including the ability to decide how our lands and resources are to be used together with Ontario. Webequie's primary objective is to ensure our community’s interests are protected now and for the future, including our traditional activities and values. We’re hopeful this process will help achieve these goals.”
Chief Cornelius Wabasse