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Kirby Lake


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Location

Wood Buffalo AB
Canada

Traditional land use assessment


Year: 2007

Abstract:
While the Kirby project is located within the Regional Municipality of Wood Buffalo, its footprint impacts on the traditional territories of a number of Aboriginal communities both within and beyond the boundaries of the municipality. At the time of writing, interviews had been held with Heart Lake First Nation, Chipewyan Prairie Dene First Nation, and the Métis holder of trapline #2361, resident at Winefred Lake. Interviews with other Aboriginal communities were in the process of being arranged. The scope of this report was framed by one central question: What effects could existing and approved developments, the project, and planned developments have on traditional land use? Data gathered for the report came from a literature review of previous community and industry-initiated traditional land use studies, as well as interviews with Heart Lake First Nation Elders and an interview with the Métis holder of RFMA #2361. Data was then analysed qualitatively and quantitatively, with an assessment of the extent of temporary and/or permanent loss of land. The study also contains a reclamation assessment in which the potential for the re-establishment of traditional plant and animal harvesting was determined using ecosite phases and habitat suitability indices for the closure landscape of the project. The baseline study includes summary information on historical and current traditional land use of the study area. A study of existing and approved development impacts includes a quantitative analysis of existing disturbances to RFMAs by listing type of disturbance and the number of hectares that disturbance occupies. Also provided is a linkage analysis, which highlights the key concerns of interviewed trappers and Heart Lake First Nation Elders, and then determines whether the linkage (or concern) is valid or invalid based on proposed project designs and operational plans. Valid linkages are then examined qualitatively, drawing on biophysical assessments for the project. Issues and concerns identified in the literature review and interviews are summarized for each community. Finally, changes to traditional land use are considered in the context of project-specific effects and cumulative effects.

Traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge: Application for the approval of the Devon Jackfish Project


Year: 2003

Abstract:
The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge section of the Devon Jackfish Environmental Impact Assessment aimed to outline data pertaining to actual and potential issues for traditional resources in the local study area, note other relevant traditional ecological knowledge for the project locality and regional study area, and outline potential issues and recommended approaches for further evaluation or mitigation. This was accomplished through a variety of means, including a literature review (incorporating past environmental impact assessments and traditional land use and occupancy studies), interviews with Elders and community members, a review of topographic maps and air photo mosaic maps, and a valued ecosystem component workshop with key stakeholders and Elders. Seventeen interviews were video-recorded and conducted in the participant's language of choice (Chipewyan, Cree, or English), with the interview format following that outlined in Kituskeenow Cultural Land-Use and Occupancy Study. Devon and Nakewin Aboriginal Authority representatives were present at some interviews. Chipewyan Prairie First Nation representatives accompanied Elders to other interviews. Following a discussion of the study area and study methodology, this section of the report outlines existing conditions of the study area. This discussion includes traditional use sites as provided by NATA, summaries of the interviews, traditional plant use, traditional animal use, and residency and trapping. An impact assessment and review of possible mitigation measures, and a brief cumulative effects assessment is provided. According to this section, Devon planned to avoid certain traditional resource use sites, but for those sites that could not be avoided, compensation would be offered through revegetation methods, low-impact or reduced impact approaches to development, ongoing monitoring and discussion with community members. The report found that there would be no cumulative effects and impacts to traditional resource use and TEK resources from the project would be low.

Traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge: Jackfish 2 environmental impact assessment


Year: 2006

Abstract:
The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge section of the Devon Jackfish 2 Environmental Impact Assessment is very similar to the same section of the environmental impact assessment for Devon's Jackfish Project in 2003. Like the previous study, this one aimed to outline data pertaining to actual and potential issues for traditional resources in the local study area, note other relevant traditional ecological knowledge for the project locality and regional study area, and outline potential issues and recommended approaches for further evaluation or mitigation. Because this section was based on a previous study, the majority of sources cited are identical with the previous study. This new traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge study incorporates the results from consultation that took place in 2004, 16 new traditional ecological knowledge interviews, including this time members of Fort McMurray First Nation, a meeting with Heart Lake First Nation, and information gathered during the new environmental impact assessment. As with the previous study, interviews were video-recorded and conducted in the participant's language of choice (Chipewyan, Cree, English, or a combination). Previous traditional ecological knowledge and traditional resource use research and baseline materials were reviewed, and interviewees were asked to sketch trails, camp areas, burials, and key landmarks on maps of the project area. This section follows the same format as the previous Jackfish report: first a discussion of the study area and study methodology, an outline of existing conditions of the study area (including traditional use sites as provided by NATA, summaries of the interviews, traditional plant use, traditional animal use, and residency and trapping). The traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge for the Jackfish 2 project, however, contain much more detailed information on traditional plants, including assessments of plant species capability (mean species richness and frequency). An impact assessment and review of possible mitigation measures, and a brief cumulative effects assessment are also provided. The report found that there would be no cumulative effects and impacts to traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge resources from the project would be low. Nonetheless, Devon's mitigation strategies include supporting traditional ways and values through potential sponsorship of traditional resource use and traditional ecological knowledge camps, training on traditional values and respect for the land, participating in the Cumulative Environmental Management Association, and maintaining ongoing communication with communities.