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Losing Ground?

The Struggle for Teztan Biny/Fish Lake

by Tamara HermanSusi Porter-Bopp

Teztan Biny/Fish Lake. Credit:
Teztan Biny/Fish Lake. Credit:

"Losing Ground? The Struggle for Teztan Biny/Fish Lake" was recorded in two communities at the epicenter of a debate surrounding one of the most controversial mines in Canadian history.

As the federal environmental assessment process for Taseko Mines' proposed "Prosperity Mine" unfolds, voices from the Tsilhqot'in community of Nemiah Valley and the City of William's Lake, B.C. explain what is at stake.

Taseko Mines' plans to convert Teztan Biny/Fish Lake into an impoundment reservoir for the mine’s toxic waste have generated both staunch support and fierce resistance. The "Prosperity Mine" conflict raises what is becoming a familiar debate in rural resource-based economies in Canada: Who gets to determine whether a mining “boom” is worth a potential “bust”? Yet the battle for Teztan Biny/Fish Lake, which is located on Tsilhqot'in territory, is couched in a broader issue of First Nations rights and title in a context of continuing colonialism.

"Losing Ground? The Struggle for Teztan Biny/Fish Lake" piece features interviews with several First Nation chiefs and community members, as well as legal and scientific specialists who testified in the environmental assessment process.

Featured Speakers/Guests: Chief Joe Alphonse, Tl’etinqox-t’in First Nation (member nation of the Tsilhqot’in National Government) Chief Marilyn Baptiste, Xeni Gwet'in First Nation (member nation of the Tsilhqot’in National Government) Children of Nemiah Valley Public School Brian Battison, Vice president of Corporate Affairs, Taseko Mines Limited Dr. Amy Crook, Fisheries biologist, Centre for Science in Public Participation Margaret Lulua, Community Natural Resource Worker, Tsilhqot’in National Government Chief Ivor Meyers, Stone First Nation, (member nation of the Tsilhqot’in National Government) Sean Nixon, lawyer, Woodward & Company

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Topics: Indigenous

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tamara (Tamara Herman)
Vancouver, Coast Salish Territories
Member since May 2009


277 words
bar baz


Prosperity Mine Project

The FN Chiefs  are oblivious to the multi billion dollar trade off in exchange for a small , shallow pothole that is largely eclipsed by over 3 million real lakes in the vast expanse of Canada . The economic welfare of the 97%majority of the population is of no concern to them .

 This is understandable , given that their financial security is guaranteed by a plethora of subsidies provided by government at taxpayers' expense .The contention that Fish lake is "vital as a source of sustenance" for the local Indians - is absolutely preposterous ..

The justification for an approval of Prosperity  enormously outweighs the meritless arguments of the opposition.------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------------

nice try Robert

But it's not just the chiefs who are against destroying lakes and turning them into waste areas. Many members of the Tsilq'otin nation, as well as non-natives in Williams Lake and elsewhere have made it clear they are against the mine.

Also I don't know where you're getting any of your information from, but frankly, it's just plain wrong.

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