SISSON BROOK MINE: Council in solidarity with grandmothers

SISSON BROOK MINE: Council in solidarity with grandmothers

Postby Oscar » Fri Jul 14, 2017 3:32 pm

Council of Canadians in solidarity with Maliseet grandmothers opposed to Sisson Brook mine

[ https://canadians.org/blog/council-cana ... brook-mine ]

July 14, 2017 - 11:42 am

(PHOTO: Maliseet grandmothers have set up a camp at the site of the proposed Sisson Brook mine, an hour north of Fredericton.)

The Council of Canadians is opposed to the proposed Sisson Brook mine in New Brunswick that was approved by the Trudeau government in late-June.

Sisson Brook is a proposed open-pit tungsten and molybdenum mine that would be built at the headwaters of the Nashwaak River on Maliseet territory about 100 kilometres north of Fredericton. The mine would also include an unlined tailings pond and an ore processing plant. Molybdenum is used for warplanes and industrial motors.

This past February, CBC reported, "The Todd Corporation, a 130-year-old company based in Wellington, New Zealand — with remarkable similarities to New Brunswick's own Irving family enterprises — has emerged as the chief backer of Northcliff Resources Ltd. and the beleaguered Sisson Brook mine it has been attempting to create."

St. Mary's First Nation Chief Candice Paul has stated, "We assert Aboriginal title to the area where the mine is being proposed ...The mine would destroy this part of our territory, it would never be the same again."

And CBC has reported, "A Maliseet First Nations chief says the New Brunswick government threatened to cancel lucrative tax deals with her band and other Indigenous communities if they didn't sign an agreement on the Sisson mine. Chief Patricia Bernard of the Madawaska Maliseet First Nation says she doesn't support the proposed mine, but her band couldn't risk losing the money it gets from provincial gas, tobacco and sales taxes collected at its Grey Rock commercial development [in Edmundston]."

That article adds, "Premier Brian Gallant [has] announced that the six Maliseet chiefs in the province had signed an 'accommodation agreement' on the proposed $579 million open-pit tungsten mine. That's despite public opposition to the project by five of those chiefs as recently as last April, when they said the project would 'destroy one of our last remaining areas to harvest and practise our culture'."

Chief Bernard says, "We do not approve and at no point do we approve of that mine. But if they're going to go ahead with the mine, we needed to take some sort of accommodation for that loss. The chiefs did not approve of this mine. This accommodation agreement is compensation for something the province is going to do."

Fredericton chapter activist Mark D'Arcy has blogged about a Longhouse that was built near the New Brunswick Legislature to coincide with 'Canada Day' as "a powerful testament to the traditions of the Wolastoqiyik".

D'Arcy highlighted, "After July 3rd, the Longhouse will be disassembled and transported to Sisson Brook in support of the grandmothers taking part in ceremony to protect the land and water from the proposed tungsten- molybdenum open-pit mine. The Wolastoq Grand Council and their non-Indigenous allies (including the chapters of Council of Canadians here in New Brunswick) understand that the risk of a tailings pond spill into the headwaters of the Nashwaak River is simply too great, as demonstrated by the catastrophic Mount Polley spill in British Columbia back in 2014."

On July 6, APTN National News reported, "Maliseet grandmothers have set up camp on the site of a proposed open pit mine."

Construction on the mine is expected to start in the spring of 2018.


Brent Patterson's blog
Political Director of the Council of Canadians
[ https://canadians.org/blogs/brent-patterson ]
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Re: SISSON BROOK: Council in solidarity with Malieseet gran

Postby Oscar » Wed Jul 19, 2017 10:49 am

Fredericton chapter supports Wolastoq Mothers & Grandmothers camp at Sisson Brook

[ https://canadians.org/blog/fredericton- ... sson-brook ]

July 18, 2017 - 7:15 pm

The Council of Canadians Fredericton chapter visited the Sisson Brook today.

Chapter activist Joan Green tells us, "The Fredericton Chapter Council of Canadians & Allies visited The Wolastoq Mothers & Grandmothers who are exercising their inherent rights by moving on to the land at Sisson Brook above Stanley, N.B. Sisson Brook is the site of one of the world’s largest open-pit mines proposed near Stanley on traditional Wolastoqiyik (Maliseet) territory. Fredericton COC & Allies were happy to deliver supplies to them & are looking forward to working with them in the future."

The Council of Canadians is opposed to the proposed Sisson Brook mine in New Brunswick that was approved by the Trudeau government in late-June.

Sisson Brook is a proposed open-pit tungsten and molybdenum mine that would be built at the headwaters of the Nashwaak River on Maliseet territory about 100 kilometres north of Fredericton. The mine would also include an unlined tailings pond and an ore processing plant. Molybdenum is used for warplanes and industrial motors.

This past February, CBC reported, "The Todd Corporation, a 130-year-old company based in Wellington, New Zealand — with remarkable similarities to New Brunswick's own Irving family enterprises — has emerged as the chief backer of Northcliff Resources Ltd. and the beleaguered Sisson Brook mine it has been attempting to create."

St. Mary's First Nation Chief Candice Paul has stated, "We assert Aboriginal title to the area where the mine is being proposed ...The mine would destroy this part of our territory, it would never be the same again." Chief Patricia Bernard of the Madawaska Maliseet First Nation says, "We do not approve and at no point do we approve of that mine."

Construction on the mine is expected to start in the spring of 2018.

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Re: SISSON BROOK: Council in solidarity with Malieseet gran

Postby Oscar » Tue Nov 28, 2017 7:21 am

Where the Brooks Begin: visiting the Sisson Brook Grandmothers’ camp

[ https://canadians.org/blog/where-brooks ... 80%99-camp ]

November 27, 2017 - 3:04 pm

(PHOTOS: throughout article)

The Wolastoq grandmothers holding down the camp at the Sisson Brook Mine are calling the place ‘Macehcwik sipohsisol’ (ma-jedge-eh-wig zeeboo-zeezil), meaning ‘where the brooks begin’. Ramona Nicholas of Tobique First Nation explained that there are at least three brooks starting in the area, and along with the land and ecosystem, all would be threatened by the project.

The camp was reestablished this summer [ http://www.cbc.ca/news/canada/new-bruns ... -1.4209673 ] after the environmental assessment received approval from the Federal government this past June. They have the full support of the Wolastoq Grand Chief Spasaqsit Possesom (Ron Tremblay), who represents the traditional government of the Wolatoq (Maliseet) Nation, but getting support from the colonial structures that are the First Nations Band Councils has been more challenging. [ https://canadians.org/blog/maliseet-chi ... redericton ]

For the Grandmothers living here, it has been a healing journey: being at the camp means reconnecting with the land, learning many lessons about living with each other and the environment, and sacrificing time with their loved ones. Their vision is to connect others to the land through ceremony. Each Grandmother has her own story, and Ramona’s is one of spiritual reconnection and resilience. Since moving to the camp full time in September, she has made plans to build a sweat lodge, a healing centre and a greenhouse.

The location is remote and Ramona tells us there’s a bear living closeby, as well as a moose and calf. Animals, plants, trees and water are considered not only living things but relations, and as such the Grandmothers remain resolved to protect this land for future generations.

And so despite the plans to create a place of healing for others in the future, they are living in solitude day by day, asserting sovereignty over the land where the brooks begin.

Details of the proposed project

Sisson Mines Ltd., a subsidiary of Northcliff Resources Ltd., has plans to move ahead with their proposed Sisson Tungsten and Molybdenum Mine Project in the spring. As noted in previous blogs about the project, the proposal includes an open-pit mine that would be built at the headwaters of the Nashwaak River on Wolastoq territory, about 100 kilometres north of Fredericton (near Napadogan in central NB). The mine would also include a tailings pond and an ore processing plant. This project’s supporters, including the New Brunswick government and industry groups, are touting jobs and economic prosperity for the region and all of NB. You can find all of the exaggerated numbers on the Sisson Partnership website. [ http://www.sissonpartnership.com/s/home.asp ]

Critiques and submissions to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency are found here by the Conservation Council of New Brunswick [ http://www.conservationcouncil.ca/en/si ... e-project/ ] as well as Mining Watch Canada. [ https://miningwatch.ca/news/2016/5/18/c ... ironmental ]

How can you support the camp? The Fredericton chapter of the Council has been raising awareness about the project, raising money for the protectors, delivering materials and assisting with building a structure at the encampment. If you’re in the area get in touch with them at chrissmissaert.rpf { @ } gmail.com

Fundraising efforts continue, with beautiful beaded birchbark heart pins made by the Grandmothers and a go fund me account (connect with me if you’d rather e-transfer to the Grandmothers to save on the administrative costs that go to go fund me). You can also stay connected through their facebook group, Connecting to the Land. [ https://www.facebook.com/groups/1462845220675370/about/ ]


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Council of Canadians' Atlantic regional organizer
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