Meeting Summary - 29 June 2011 - Tuqqayaq Community Hall, Clyde River, Nunavut

Arctic Offshore Drilling Review

Information Meeting Summary

Date and Location
Date Location
Wednesday
29 June 2011
1:00 p.m. and 3:00 p.m.
and
7:00 p.m. and 9:00 p.m.
Tuqqayaq Community Hall
Clyde River, Nunavut

Purpose: Phase 2 Information Meeting

Participants
Participants
Bharat Dixit Technical Leader, Exploration and Production, NEB
Pamela Romanchuk Environmental Specialist, NEB
Susan Gudgeon Northern Coordinator, NEB
Christy Wickenheiser Environmental Specialist, NEB

Presentation (NEB):

National Energy Board staff gave a presentation providing an overview of:

  • the Board's role in the North
  • the scope of the Arctic Offshore Drilling Review
  • what has occurred to date including stakeholder meetings and information filed
  • where the Review is now at
  • what is coming up
  • funding

Questions and Comments:

The following questions and comments were posed:

  • In this community we have concerns and that is why we are here but there are not many people and we won't be listened to. We need more people to support us. We don't want drilling.
  • My diet is from the land. I grew up eating from the land and am concerned about the animals.
  • I also have a question. Do you just approve applications if people want to do drilling in our waters? We are never involved. In the Arctic we don't feel like we are part of Canada. We are treated differently. So many people are drilling around Greenland. If there is an accident our food and diet will be lost. We want to keep living our way. This shouldn't be put at risk.
  • See accidents all over the world. When accidents happen it is not like the companies say it would be.
  • If an accident affects the animals what will we do? What will we eat? You are from another world. All you want is profits. You are putting us at risk if you allow drilling.
  • We are only treated as Canadians when you want something from us. Shouldn't allow drilling to be approved. I used to be shy but not now. Animals are dying and we will be blamed. They cannot talk for themselves. I am talking for them.
  • Many have committed suicide. It is very expensive to live here. We want to be heard. You see us with our nice clothes and think it is okay but we work very hard. It is very expensive to live here and it is hard.
  • There needs to be a change. We need to be involved and make decisions for ourselves. You should not make decisions for us.
  • I just walked in but heard you wanted to hear from the community but if you go to Parliament it is better because they just approve everything.
  • You talk about responding, how would an incident like the Gulf be dealt with here?
  • Have you even thought about our animals?
  • You say you have heard about our culture, what kinds of beliefs and values have you heard about our culture?
  • $300,000 for funding is like $30 today - that is not enough. It is expensive to travel from here.
  • Clyde River is adjacent to Greenland and the way the ocean moves Clyde River could be impacted.
  • Is there money for people for other programs?
  • Is there criteria of who can attend the Roundtable?
  • The ocean is not a playground - can go hypothermic in two minutes. Insulted in how you are saying things.
  • In saying you are considering the unique Arctic environment, is this traditional knowledge that you are looking at?
  • A lot are concerned about polar bears and they are getting thinner and noise is being blamed. Is the NEB going to be responsive to hear if noise and smoke are responsible and not just blame climate change?
  • Are people in the Beaufort still eating whales, fish and seals?
  • Dispersants would sink to the bottom of the ocean and will destroy our fragile ecosystem if used. Are dispersants legal?
  • Is our area being used as a guinea pig?
  • This is one of the riches areas in the world and dispersants would be devastating.
  • We have been conserving and preserving the animals - we take what we need but do not over harvest.
  • Would dispersants harm bowheads?
  • Food starts from the bottom so if that is harmed, all the animals up will be affected. What would we do for our food?
  • You spoke of compensation - that is a big word - how can you put a dollar figure on what we have and what we could lose?
  • Is this consultation?
  • This doesn't work as a process - couldn't have picked a worse time to come to the community for these meetings.
  • There are many different creatures. Like these (carvings) animals cannot talk for themselves so I talk for them. They are there and they cannot talk. It is putting us at risk and should not be approved. Many will profit and we will get no benefit. The cost of living keeps rising. If we want to go to the next community it is impossible. We have friends and families we love and care about and we cannot go. We were born here and we use our resources to live. You should not put that at risk. You are decision makers and we will only hear through the news what you decide. You should not be deciding for us. How much money are you paid when you approve the drilling?
  • The NEB says it will not approve drilling unless there are capabilities/procedures that are good. Does that mean benefits?
  • If we forget to say something now, can we say it at the Roundtable?
  • Thank you for coming to our community.

Concluding remarks:

  • NEB staff are available to assist in completing registration forms for the Roundtable as well as funding applications.
  • Copies of DVDs containing the information on the NEB Arctic Offshore Drilling Review website are available.
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