Through the Reconciliation Framework Agreement for Bioregional Oceans Management and Protection, the Government of Canada and 14 First Nations committed to work together to develop and manage marine initiatives on the Pacific North Coast.
The Agreement supports the collaborative planning, implementation, and integration of existing and proposed marine planning initiatives in the Northern Shelf bioregion. It will promote a more coordinated and efficient approach to the governance, management, and protection of oceans in the Pacific North Coast, including marine ecosystems, marine resources and marine use activities.
Canada and First Nations will implement the Agreement guided by the following principles:
- Cultural significance and reliance: Acknowledgement of the importance of the past, present, and future cultural significance, spiritual affiliation, and reliance on the marine ecosystems and resources in the Northern Shelf bioregion to the Pacific North Coast Nations.
- Solution oriented: Seek solutions which respect the rights, responsibilities, and authorities of each of the parties.
- Flexibility: Acknowledge that issues and needs with respect to ocean governance and management vary across local, sub-regional, and regional scales.
- Ecosystem approach: Respect conservation and sustainability of marine ecosystems and resources.
- Transparency and information sharing: Support an effective, inclusive, transparent, and collaborative process for information sharing and document development, which recognizes that some information must be kept confidential.
This Agreement marks an innovative approach to advancing reconciliation and collaboration on managing and protecting Canada’s oceans. This approach may guide collaboration with First Nations across the country.
Four ministers from the Government of Canada are participating in the Agreement, including the:
- Minister of Transport
- Minister of Fisheries, Oceans and the Canadian Coast Guard
- Minister of Environment and Climate Change
- Minister of Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs
Fourteen Central and Northern British Columbia First Nations are participating in the Agreement and more could join in the future:
- Council of Haida Nation
- Lax Kw’alaams Band
- Gitxaala Nation
- Metlakatla First Nation
- Gitga’at First Nation
- Kitasoo/Xaixais First Nation
- K'ómoks First Nation
- Heiltsuk Nation
- Nuxalk First Nation
- Wuikinuxv First Nation
- Mamalilikulla Nation
- Tlowitsis Nation
- Da'naxda'xw Awaetlatla First Nation
- Wei Wai Kum First Nation