Pieridae Energy wants to build an LNG export plant in Nova Scotia, Canada. The Mi’kmaq (pronounced mic-mac) indigenous peoples of Nova Scotia (i.e. Indians) have never formally surrendered their “ownership” claim of Nova Scotia–a claim long disputed. In order to build and operate the Goldboro LNG export facility, Pieridae has agreed to pay off the Mi’kmaq. Call it “leave us alone” money.
If Pieridae or any other big petchem operation wants to set up operation in Nova Scoita, they must pay a fee to the Mi’kmaq to be left alone and allowed to operate. That’s how it works in organized crime, and that’s how it works with “First Nations” Indians in Canada. Sorry if the truth hurts.
In May 2017, MDN told you that Pieridae had signed a labor agreement to build the Goldboro LNG export facility (see Update on Goldboro LNG – Labor Agreement Signed to Build). The U.S. Dept. of Energy approved the plant for exporting to non-free trade agreement counties in February 2016, an indication that Marcellus/Utica gas may flow to the plant (see Goldboro LNG Project Gets Final DOE Approval – Good for Marcellus).
A year ago Pieridae hired both Morgan Stanley and Société Générale to help the company raise up to $10 billion (Canadian) to build the project (see Pieridae Energy Hires Morgan Stanley, SG to Help Fund Goldboro LNG).
But before you begin to move dirt around, you need to pay off the Indians–otherwise they’ll show up in court and tie you up for decades.
Last October the Mi’kmaq mysteriously and suddenly withdrew their objection to the Goldboro project:
A Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq band has dropped its objection to the proposed Goldboro liquefied natural gas plant in Guysborough County.
The province’s utility and review board scheduled a hearing for Oct. 15 after Sipekne’katik First Nation said earlier this year it had not been properly consulted as required under law.
In a letter to the board dated Sept. 28, Sipekne’katik Chief Michael Sack said the band was formally withdrawing its objection and would not be submitting any further evidence to the board.
“Sipekne’katik is satisfied that any Aboriginal and treaty rights … will not be diminished or impinged” by the project, Sack wrote.
The letter did not elaborate on why the band was withdrawing its objection and the chief did not return calls for comment.
The band office is located in Indian Brook, N.S., about 250 kilometres west of the proposed LNG site, but Sack has said all along the First Nation never surrendered any of its traditional territory.
The LNG developer, Pieridae Energy of Calgary, said last month in a board filing that any delay beyond Sept. 28 could jeopardize the project.
In a letter dated Sept. 28, Pieridae acknowledged Sipekne’katik’s withdrawal of its objection, and asked that the hearing be cancelled because no other objections exist.
Pieridae pushes for application
“We would therefore ask that the board continue with the merits of Pieridae’s permit to construct application,” the filing said.
The Nova Scotia Office of Aboriginal Affairs told CBC News in an email last month that it has held “ongoing consultation with Sipekne’katik about the project.”
After the band withdrew its objection, the province wrote the board and said that it “supports the board moving forward with the merits of Pieridae’s permit to construct application without delay.”
Pieridae now has until Oct. 19 to respond to a tentative approval for a licence to build the plant.
The tentative green light was given Sept. 27, when the board’s certifying authority, Lloyd’s Register of Halifax, said in a report that Pieridae could go ahead with certain conditions.
The conditions include following federal and provincial regulations and allowing Lloyd’s Register to inspect the construction, among other things.
Company nearly ready to proceed
Pieridae has said it’s nearly ready to make a final investment decision on its proposed plant, but it needs a building permit first.
The company has proposed building a liquefaction plant for natural gas from the nearby Maritimes and Northeast Pipeline. Product would then be delivered to customers by ship.
No one from Pieridae returned CBC News calls for comment. (1)
We now know why the Mi’kmaq dropped their objection. Because Pieridae has agreed to pay them off, which Pieridae admitted to earlier this week:
Pieridae Energy Limited (Pieridae) (TSXV: PEA) is pleased to announce that the Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Benefits Agreement which it negotiated with the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs (the Assembly) has now been ratified.
“We are looking forward to collaborating with the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia, and their leadership, in realizing for them the benefits of this important project” said Alfred Sorensen, CEO of Pieridae.
This Benefits Agreement establishes the framework under which the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia will benefit economically from the development, construction and operation of the Goldboro LNG Project. A Memorandum of Understanding (MOU) signed in 2013 originally outlined the relationship between Pieridae and the Mi’kmaq in Nova Scotia and this new Benefits Agreement underscores Pieridae’s commitment to ongoing engagement and relationship building with the First Nations communities in Nova Scotia.
“Nova Scotia is unceded Mi’kmaq territory and the management of our lands and resources is a priority for our Nation,” said Chief Terrance Paul, Co-Chair for the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs. “As we look to ensure responsible development and environmental stewardship that reflect a Mi’kmaq voice, it’s important that we can bridge that gap with industry. This agreement with Pieridae is an example of how companies can respect our Mi’kmaw Rights and Title, and also provide an opportunity for Mi’kmaq participation in development on our lands.”
Founded in 2011, Pieridae, a majority Canadian owned corporation based in Calgary, is focused on the development of integrated energy-related activities, from the exploration and extraction of natural gas to the development, construction and operation of the Goldboro LNG facility and the production of LNG for sale to Europe and other markets. Pieridae is on the leading edge of the re-integration of the LNG value chain in North America. Pieridae has 74,527,875 shares issued and outstanding which trade on the TSX Venture Exchange (PEA).
About the Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs
The Assembly of Nova Scotia Mi’kmaq Chiefs is comprised of all 13 Mi’kmaq Chiefs in Nova Scotia and is the highest level of collective governance for the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia. (2)
Notice the amount of the payoff wasn’t listed. We searched high and low for a copy of the “Benefits Agreement” online and could not find it. Must be a closely guarded secret how much money it took to buy them off.
(1) Canadian Broadcasting Corporation (Oct 4, 2018) – Mi’kmaq band drops objection to proposed Goldboro LNG plant
(2) Pieridae Energy (Feb 4, 2019) – Pieridae Negotiates a Benefits Agreement with the Mi’kmaq of Nova Scotia
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