B.C. First Nations get it.

VICTORIA – B.C. aboriginals are accusing the Liberal government of playing dirty when it comes to the proposed Clean Energy Act.

Forty-seven B.C. First Nations and three major First Nations organizations are calling on the provincial government to delay passage of the bill, which they say ignores their concerns.

The act, introduced last month and currently being debated in the legislature, would allow major projects like the Site C dam in northeast B.C. to proceed without scrutiny from the B.C. Utilities Commission.

Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs Grand Chief Stewart Phillip said Wednesday aboriginals believe the government wants major dam, pipeline and mine projects to go ahead without consulting aboriginals or others.

He said the government is using the act to pave the way for what he called a modern gold rush of unopposed mega developments.

“Needless to say it’s running head-long into growing opposition from First Nations communities,” Phillip said. “They’re hell-bent on steamrolling over our constitutionally-enshrined and traditionally upheld aboriginal title and rights in favour of a global economic agenda designed to unleash an unprecedented wave of industrialization throughout the province in terms of mines, dams and pipelines.” (my italics)

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