First Nations protesting Ontario’s accelerated mining development plans – by Niall McGee (Globe and Mail – March 29, 2023)

Five First Nations communities are planning to stare down Doug Ford in the Ontario Legislature Wednesday, alleging that the Premier is railroading through mining development without their consent.

Leaders of Neskantaga, KI, Grassy Narrows, Wapekeka and Muskrat Dam First Nations said in a statement they are converging on Queen’s Park with a message to Premier Ford that pushing through mining on their lands against their will, “courts conflict and violates their rights.”

“The Ford Government has granted thousands of mining claims without First Nations consent and is now trying to fast track dangerous mine approvals, delay safe closure plans and build environmentally risky roads through the muskeg to the Ring of Fire,” added the First Nations Land Defense Alliance. The Ford government earlier this month tabled legislation aimed at speeding up mine approvals.

The Ontario government’s proposed changes would make it easier for companies to obtain permits to mine metals from tailings, allow companies to defer upfront payments on plans to close mines and loosen restrictions related to the rehabilitation of shuttered mine sites.

For the rest of this article: