STATEMENT – LANCASTER SOUND

August 23, 2017

OTTAWA, ON – Senator Dennis Patterson congratulates the parties who announced their agreement to a boundary for the long-proposed Lancaster Sound Marine Protection Area – Tallurutiup Imanga – after many years of discussions and negotiations. Senator Patterson noted that this agreement resulted from years of co-operative consultation with Inuit and the territorial government.

This process of co-operative consultation must be the model for decision making going forward on all matters involving the offshore in Nunavut, unlike the federal government’s unilateral December 2016 decision to establish an Arctic oil and gas moratorium, which was preceded by no discussions with either the Inuit or the territorial governments,” said Senator Patterson.

The Senator for Nunavut also welcomed the announcement that a new, whole-of-government approach has been implemented to negotiate the new Inuit Impact Benefit Agreement (IIBA).

I welcome the expanded scope and whole-of-government approach being committed to in these new negotiations regarding the Lancaster Sound IIBA.  I would encourage the federal government to rise to the occasion and recognize the importance of a comprehensive IIBA negotiation, which will establish tangible benefits for the communities and their traditional marine based economies in the region.

This is an opportunity to finally involve all federal government departments whose decisions and policies impact the Arctic offshore including: Natural Resources Canada, Transport Canada, Fisheries and Oceans, and Infrastructure Canada, he said. “This commitment provides a much needed opportunity to examine and improve oil spill response, search and rescue, marine and air transportation and infrastructure among the many other priorities that Inuit have for the region. The IIBA should also address the long-awaited creation of the Nunavut Marine Council contemplated in the Nunavut Agreement to provide for ongoing co-ordination in the offshore,” stated Senator Patterson.

Senator Patterson expressed his support for the IIBA process established in the Nunavut Agreement and expressed his confidence that Inuit will ensure that their rights, livelihoods, and future are protected by the agreements that they negotiate for themselves and future generations.

Statement – Lancaster Sound