Lake Babine Nation agreement creates new opportunities

BURNS LAKE – An incremental treaty agreement (ITA) between the Province and Lake Babine Nation will support new forestry and eco-tourism opportunities.

Similar to other ITAs, the agreement not only supports economic development for the First Nation, but also demonstrates some of the benefits of treaty in advance of a final agreement.

The ITA transfers to Lake Babine Nation four parcels of land that will support opportunities for forestry and eco-tourism, as well as providing $100,000 in capacity funding to help develop these opportunities.

One of the parcels to be transferred is Fort Babine Lodge. The lodge is an existing resort situated on the shores of Babine Lake, offering accommodation in cabins and access to recreational opportunities such as fishing, hunting and hiking. The other parcels will provide forestry opportunities, and the lakefront properties could be leased as recreation properties.

The ITA also identifies several other land parcels that would be transferred as the community proceeds through the treaty process and reaches an agreement-in-principle.

Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation Minister John Rustad –

“This agreement provides economic development opportunities for Lake Babine Nation and gives the community a sense of the benefits they would see through treaty. The new forestry and tourism opportunities that this ITA creates will not only benefit Lake Babine Nation, but also Burns Lake and other nearby communities.”

Lake Babine Nation Chief Wilf Adam –

“Since it takes time to reach a treaty, we need to use and protect our lands. This agreement will provide economic benefits to our citizens. We must use all measures to protect and best use our lands, and this arrangement will be a positive move.”

Quick Facts:

  • The Lake Babine Nation ITA is B.C.’s 15th incremental treaty agreement.
  • The Province introduced ITAs in order to accelerate the treaty process, by providing First Nations in the treaty process with earlier access to treaty benefits, in advance of a final agreement.
  • Incremental treaty agreements build trust among the parties, create incentives to reach further milestones and provide increased certainty over land and resources.
  • An incremental treaty agreement is not a replacement for treaty. It is a pre-treaty agreement, not a final agreement.

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