ACTIVIST CLAIM: Out of touch Hollywood celebrity pens Rolling Stone Op-Ed with activist threatening to leave bank over support for Coastal GasLink and repeating claims about ignoring Indigenous rights.
THE FACTS: Celebrities who support protests on Wet’suwet’en land ignore and silence Indigenous voices in the community who support natural resource development.
Here are some facts and sources to have a reasoned conversation about Coastal GasLink:
- 100% of elected First Nation councils along the pipeline route support Coastal GasLink and have signed benefits agreements for their communities. It is not the place of activist groups to determine what an Indigenous community can or can’t do.
- 16 First Nations along Coastal GasLink’s route, just signed an option to take a 10% equity stake in the pipeline project.
- Over 13,900 Indigenous workers are directly employed in the oil and gas industry with 350 working on the Coastal GasLink project including Wet’suwet’en members.
- The activists who are supporting protests on Wet’suwet’en land try to silence Indigenous voices who support natural resource projects, and use them as political pawns instead of respecting their sovereignty.
Indigenous leaders fear that activism from celebrities has become a form of “Eco-Colonialism” where many non-Indigenous groups claim to represent Indigenous voices.
Stories that get it right
COSIA members have contributed more than 1,143 clean technologies at a cost of $1.8 billion and counting, significantly improving environmental performance in the region. The results are evident. Since 2012:
• In situ operators have reduced freshwater use intensity by 46 per cent.
• Mining operators have reduced net water use intensity from the Athabasca River and its tributaries by 25 per cent.
• In situ operators have also reduced their operating footprint intensity by six per cent.
• Meanwhile, the intensity of greenhouse gas emissions in the oil sands has declined by 20 per cent (between 2009 and 2018), according to a 2022 IHS Markit report.