Contributed by Michelle Stirling © 2021
In December of 2020, Kelly McParland wrote in the National Post: ” Why the Liberal hurry to ram through new Indigenous legislation? The timeline offers limited opportunity to highlight potential problems with Bill C-15. It’s dishonest, divisive and wholly unnecessary.
Indeed, it has come to my attention that this bill, meant to ‘harmonize Canadian laws with a United Nations declaration on Indigenous rights’ and require ‘free, informed and prior consent’ to First Nations, but if you can believe it, several First Nations say they are not being consulted and furthermore, they do not consent!
Ironically, I looked back through my files and found that I had written on this topic several years ago when I was a Yahoo Contributor. Here’s what I had written – perhaps prescient!
Oil Sands Jobs Will Be Shut Down When Banks Go Carbon Neutral
By Michelle Stirling (©2012 – for Yahoo Contributor)
Normally people associate corporate ‘color’ marketing campaigns with social benefits – like the ‘pink’ for breast cancer fund-raisers. But the ‘green’ for going carbon neutral might have some unexpected consequences.
While reviewing the on-line environmental statement of a major Canadian bank that just announced its carbon neutral status, I was alarmed to find the radical “BankTrack” on its list of ENGOs that this bank had engaged in an ‘environmental dialogue’.
First of all, I think the whole carbon issue is a big scam; much of it driven by the Carbon War Room where wealthy speculators like Richard Branson plan to get even richer thanks to simpletons like you and I who are terrified of ‘global warming’.
But secondly, while reviewing “BankTrack’s” contribution to thoughtful commentary on the economy and the environment, I could only find rabid spewing about the ‘tar sands’, claiming that ‘the tar sands need to be phased out immediately.’
At first I thought it was some kind of joke that this group could ever be listed on a major bank’s website as part of their ‘environmental dialogue’. But further investigation revealed that this bank had also bought right into one of BankTrack’s demands as noted below:
- Require clients to provide evidence of Free Prior Informed Consent (FPIC) from First Nations on projects and activities affecting their communities. FPIC reflects international law, minimizes conflict, and was adopted by TD Bank Financial Group as part of its Environmental Management Framework in 2007.[emphasis mine]
- Phase out financing and advisory to projects related to oil sands, which adversely impact, in a non-reversible manner, critical natural habitats or freshwater resources used for drinking water. French bank Dexia adopted this global best practice as a part of its Energy Sector Guidelines in 2008.
- Develop an action plan to reduce financed emissions of climate change pollution related to lending activities. This new global standard was announced in 2009 by Unicredit Bank as part of its “Green Deal” with WWF to reduce C02 emissions by 30% by 2020.
So, to my mind it is crazy to be a client of a bank that deals with groups that want to get rid of your customers’ workplace! After all, something like 1 in 4 Canadians are directly employed by the oil sands and 1 in 9 benefit indirectly.
I also didn’t understand why a bank would cooperate with unelected, unaccountable, overseas environmental radicals who have no First Nations people in their countries, yet write up rules for us and ours. Or why is the bank working with eco-propaganda groups like WWF instead of standing-up for industry at home?
I guess they think they are saving the planet by turning green and by some twisted logic, that their clients will like this move. Until their clients become unemployed that is.
Looks like ultimately going carbon neutral = income neutral too.
That’s what I wrote in 2012.
Now, despite Bill C-15 supposedly being about protecting the human rights of First Nations people and ensuring that they are consulted, several of the First Nations people I heard from say that they are not being consulted and they do not consent.
The National Coalition of Chiefs are working to defeat on-reserve poverty. They see constructive partnerships with the resource sector as a means of economic cooperation, employment, freedom and dignity. They do not consent to UNDRIP Bill C-15.
Here’s a statement from the Treaty 6, Treaty 7, and Treaty 8 Chiefs.
The Confederacy of Treaty No. 6 Chiefs reject flawed Bill C-15
Grand chief in Alberta says AFN shouldn’t be consulting on UNDRIP bill with Canada
The Mohawk Council of Kahnawà:ke (MCK) has also expressed concerns.
House of Commons acquiesces to horse owners, shuns Kahnawake with Bill C-218
This is more of a “made-in-Geneva” bill than one that is made in Canada. There are concerns that the groups that stand to benefit in some way are the environmental non-governmental organizations (ENGOs), most of whom have pushed hard for this bill, claiming it represents ‘climate justice’. But it is not ‘climate justice’ if no one is listening to the people they claim to what to protect. It’s just more greenwashing.
To learn about how ENGOs capitalize on indigenous issues, “Cloak of Green” is a must read.
REVIEW: Rogelio A. Maduro 21st Century Science and Technology : “Cloak of Green … is a devastating expose of the shady finances of the international environmental movement… if you’ve been snookered into supporting the groups that raise money to prevent environmental doomsdays, this book just might help save your money for real causes.”
“The Greening of Costa Rica” shows how WWF-Canada and the IMF made devastating ‘debt-for-nature’ deals with Costa Rica, turning once independent small farmers into carbon serfs.
FROM AMAZON: Since the 1992 Earth Summit in Rio de Janeiro, the concept of sustainable development has become the basis for a vast number of “green industries” from eco-tourism to carbon sequestration. In The “Greening” of Costa Rica, Ana Isla exposes the results of the economist’s rejection of physical limits to growth, the biologist’s fetish with such limits, and the indebtedness of peripheral countries.
Isla’s case study is the 250,000 hectare Arenal-Tilaran Conservation Area, created in the late 1990s as the result of Canada-Costa Rica debt-for-nature swaps. Rather than reducing poverty and creating equality, development in and around the conservation area has dispossessed and disenfranchised subsistence farmers, expropriating their land, water, knowledge, and labour.
Drawing on a decade of fieldwork in these communities, Isla exposes the duplicity of a neoliberal model in which the environment is converted into commercial assets such as carbon credits, intellectual property, cash crops, open-pit mining, and eco-tourism, few of whose benefits flow to the local population.
Environmental Non-Governmental Organizations (ENGOs) have targeted the financial and insurance sectors in an attempt to shut down operations of coal, oil, oil sands and natural gas, usually presenting images of wind or solar farms and claiming these are viable replacements. They often claim there is an ‘energy revolution’ underway – a claim disputed by energy expert and author Vaclav Smil. Read “Unfriend ENGOs – Befriend Facts“