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Joint statement released on qathet region paper mill

Tla’amin Nation and regional district focus on importance of economic development and environmental stewardship
RESPONSIBLE MANAGEMENT: Tla’amin Nation and qathet Regional District have issued a statement regarding the Catalyst Paper Tis’kwat mill, outlining economic and environmental requirements for the site.

Tla’amin Nation and qathet Regional District (qRD) have released a joint statement on the future of the site of the Catalyst Paper mill at Tis’kwat.

According to a media release from Tla’amin and the regional district, Tis’kwat was once the principal settlement of the Tla’amin people.

The release stated that the joint statement focuses on the importance of the site for future economic development, as well as the manner in which the site needs to be stewarded to ensure the greatest degree of local benefit and to responsibly manage the decaying infrastructure and toxic legacy of more than a century of industrial activity on the site.

The release stated that Tla’amin Nation’s modern treaty protects its right to a specific claim to the Tis’kwat site, which is now formally underway with the Government of Canada. Additionally, Tla'amin and the Province of British Columbia have established an intergovernmental forum to address shared interests at Tis’kwat. Tla’amin has also conducted significant due diligence regarding environmental liabilities and economic prospects at the site, the release stated.

“We are planning for a dynamic set of economic activities at Tis’kwat, including low carbon fuel production, value-added forest products and land-based aquaculture – sustainable businesses that can benefit from the site’s unique attributes, such as existing infrastructure, availability of local hydro power, open water access and proximity to population centres,” stated Tla'amin hegus John Hackett.

Through the joint statement on Tis’kwat, Tla’amin Nation and qRD assert a shared commitment that future economic activity at Tis’kwat should be guided by a credible and comprehensive vision and business plan. This is a plan that the parties say must be consistent with local values and aspirations, backed by the deployment of extensive resources to responsibly remediate and manage the environmental liabilities at the site, according to the release.

“The Tis’kwat mill site has an extensive history going back thousands of years,” stated qRD board chair Clay Brander. “We recognize the potential offered by the site and share the goal of the Tla’amin Nation that the site be managed effectively to benefit the local economy, culture and environment well into the future. By requiring future site operators to prove they have the resources to maintain operations sustainably, our governments aim to prevent the mill site from becoming a financial and environmental liability for our community.”

The joint statement is available at:

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