First Nations legal challenge of rescinded coal policy going to court this year
SIKSIKA NATION, AB – The Blood Tribe is taking part in an effort lead by the Siksika Nation to challenge the province’s decision to rescind Alberta’s long-standing Coal Policy.
The legal challenge was jointly filed by the First Nations on November 25, 2020, and will be heard in court later in 2021. A specific date has not yet been scheduled.
Siksika and the Blood Tribe argue that rescinding open-pit mining protections for Category Two lands, specifically in the Crowsnest Pass area, could have disastrous impacts on sensitive wildlife populations, as well as the headwaters of the Oldman and Livingstone Rivers.
The First Nations also point out that recent announcements from Environment Minister Jason Nixon to cancel a handful of coal leases and assure Albertans about responsible coal development are “merely political gestures and will not protect these fragile and highly valued areas of the Rocky Mountains.”