Sampson said the $1.15-billion offer in benefits over 40 years was not discussed at all during the meeting, which took place in a school gym so packed that some band members had to stand outside.

"Too much was at stake to wipe out a whole river," said the father of eight and grandfather of 20. He described the atmosphere at the meeting, where both proponents and the band council made presentations, as "very tense."

Luanne Roth of the T. Buck Suzuki Foundation said an estimated 60 per cent of the Skeena estuary's eel grass is located immediately off Lelu Island, which she described as critical salmon habitat.

"It's in the worst place they could have chosen in the whole north coast," she said of the proposed LNG site.

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Skeena salmon beat out $ Billion in first Lax Kw’alaams vote

B.C. First Nation rejects more than $1B in first stage of vote over LNG proposal

By The Canadian Press May 6, 2015 4:32 PM

A $1.15-billion benefits package is being offered to a First Nation on British Columbia's northwest coast in a bid to win support for a proposed liquefied-natural-gas terminal and pipeline.


PORT SIMPSON, B.C. - The first of three votes on a natural gas benefit offer worth over $1 billion has been unanimously rejected by a First Nation on British Columbia's northwest coast.
All of the more than 180 eligible voters at a meeting in Port Simpson stood up to oppose the plan to build a liquefied-natural-gas pipeline and terminal in their territory, said Lax Kw'alaams band member Malcolm Sampson.

Pacific NorthWest LNG, which is mostly owned by Malaysia-based oil and gas giant Petronas, has applied to build an export terminal on Lelu Island, just south of Prince Rupert at the head of the Skeena River.
Residents have raised concerns over the project's environmental impact, citing the site's problematic location and the threat it poses to the watershed.

"Why would you build an LNG plant right at the mouth of the Skeena River?" said Sampson, who spoke at Tuesday's meeting. "There of all places."
Sampson said the $1.15-billion offer in benefits over 40 years was not discussed at all during the meeting, which took place in a school gym so packed that some band members had to stand outside.

"Too much was at stake to wipe out a whole river," said the father of eight and grandfather of 20. He described the atmosphere at the meeting, where both proponents and the band council made presentations, as "very tense."
Luanne Roth of the T. Buck Suzuki Foundation said an estimated 60 per cent of the Skeena estuary's eel grass is located immediately off Lelu Island, which she described as critical salmon habitat.

"It's in the worst place they could have chosen in the whole north coast," she said of the proposed LNG site.

Read More