It’s a slim proposal that little noticed, except in at least two places.
In Ontario, government officials will suggest limiting new mining operations at a reserve near the town of Grassy Narrows, home to what’s widely viewed as the most pristine spot in Ontario.
In the U.S., those behind the new rule are lobbying Congress for funding to restore the last coal mines in the Great Lakes.
The proposals are part of a larger push from the Canadian government to take greater control over the resources that lie beyond its borders. In 2017, the Canadian government granted the Grassy Narrows coal mine a permit. It’s widely opposed by tribal members and environmentalists.
In a report published by the Canadian government in November, “Stop the Injustice and Mass Destruction: Stopping Environmental Destruction and Protected Land From Becoming an InjustICE Facility,” the authors observe that “the violence and devastation that has resulted from the Environmental Impact Statement process have nothing to do with the true needs and interests of First Nations.”
The Canadian government has yet to act on that report.