Archived -  Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement Annual Report of the Implementation Committee April 1, 2000 - March 31, 2001

Archived information

This Web page has been archived on the Web. Archived information is provided for reference, research or record keeping purposes. It is not subject to the Government of Canada Web Standards and has not been altered or updated since it was archived. Please contact us to request a format other than those available.

PDF Version   (223 Kb, 33 Pages)


Table of Contents


The Implementation Committee is pleased to provide its eighth annual report on the implementation of the Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement. This report covers the fiscal year extending from April 1, 2000 to March 31, 2001.

The Implementation Committee is composed of a senior official from each of the parties: the Gwich'in Tribal Council (GTC), the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and the Government of Canada. The Committee functions by consensus and serves as a forum where parties can raise issues and voice their concerns.

The role of the Implementation Committee is to oversee, monitor and provide direction on implementation of the Agreement. This annual report describes achievements and developments during the year. Information is contributed by various federal and territorial departments, the Gwich'in Tribal Council and other bodies established under the Agreement.

Progress is being achieved within a relationship defined by mutual respect and a commitment to fulfilling the obligations set out in the Agreement.

Return to Table of Contents

Glossary of Acronyms and Abbreviations

AGJV Arctic Goose Joint Venture

AHRDA Aboriginal Human Resource Development Agreement

AIP Agreement-in-Principle

CEAA Canadian Environmental Assessment Act

CEAMF Cumulative Effects Assessment and Management Framework

CIM Cumulative Impact Monitoring

CWS Canadian Wildlife Service

DFO Department of Fisheries and Oceans

GIS Geographic Information System

GLA Gwich'in Land Administration

GLUPB Gwich'in Land Use Planning Board

GLWB Gwich'in Land and Water Board

GNWT Government of the Northwest Territories

GRRB Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board

GSA Gwich'in Settlement Area

GSCI Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute

GTC Gwich'in Tribal Council

HRDC Human Resources Development Canada

IB Implementation Branch

INAC Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

IPC Implementation Planning Committee (YDAP)

IPG Institutions of Public Government

MAA Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, GNWT

MACA Department of Municipal and Community Affairs, GNWT

MOU Memorandum of Understanding

MVEIRB Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board

MVRMA Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act

NCP Northern Contaminants Program

NEB National Energy Board

NWT Northwest Territories

PAS Protected Area Strategy

PWGSC Public Works and Government Services Canada

RRC Renewable Resources Council

RWED Department of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development, GNWT

YDAP Yukon Development Assessment Process

Return to Table of Contents

1. Features of the Agreement

On April 22, 1992, the Gwichin Tribal Council, the Government of the Northwest Territories (GNWT) and the Government of Canada signed the Gwich'in Comprehensive Land Claim Agreement and the accompanying Implementation Plan. The Agreement took effect on December 22, 1992.

Major provisions of the Agreement include:

The Agreement also provides for the negotiation of agreements on self-government, which will be brought into effect through federal or territorial legislation or both.

Return to Table of Contents

2. Highlights

Significant highlights of the Annual Report of the Implementation Committee, 2000-2001 include:

. The GTC received capital transfer payments of $9,318,835 after negotiation loans were deducted.

. The GTC continued to enroll eligible participants in the Agreement. The Enrolment Registry now lists 2,466 participants.

. The Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board allocated $361,283 to fund 21 research and management projects including those directed at increasing knowledge of wildlife, fisheries, forest monitoring and the environment.

. The Gwich'in Environmental Knowledge Project developed a second book covering an additional 20 wildlife and fish species, which is expected to be available in the summer of 2001.

. The Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board received additional operational funding as a result of its increased, volume-driven workload.

. Negotiators of the Beaufort-Delta Self-Government Agreement drafted an Agreement-in-Principle for review by all parties.

. The GTC, the Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board and the GNWT jointly prepared a draft Forest Management Plan.

. The Northwest Territories Protected Areas Strategy Implementation Advisory Committee was established and includes representatives from each Aboriginal organization, including the GTC, industry, environmental non-government organizations, and the governments of Canada and the Northwest Territories.

. The Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute began implementation of the five-year Gwich'in Language Plan developed in consultation with Gwich'in communities, organizations, local schools and government.

. The land and history book, Googwandak: A History of the Gwichya Gwich'in and of Tsiigehtchic, was completed by the Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute. This unique document recounts the land use and culture of the Gwichya Gwich'in through oral history, archival, published and archeological information collected since 1992.

. Indian and Northern Affairs Canada provided various financial resources to Gwich'in bands and organizations in support of the traditional economy, to encourage employment and for the fulfilment of obligations under the Agreement.

.The Department of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development of the GNWT provided assistance to Gwich'in organizations for numerous initiatives,including youth land-based conservation programs, participation at the Fifth Annual Mining Symposium,and travel to various oil and gas conferences. The Department developed a guide training program with participation from Gwich'in/Inuvialuit organizations and other government departments. It also provided funding to the GTC to support summer student hiring and allocated resources for additional summer student hiring internally.

.Contracts awarded by Public Works and Services of the GNWT included $715,000 to the Gwich'in Development Corporation for a water truck-fill station at Deep Water Lake and $565,000 to 4801 NWT Ltd., which is a partnership of the Nihtat Gwich'in Development Corporation and Ummarmiut Development Corporation, for the schematic and foundation design of the new Inuvik hospital.

.Indian and Northern Affairs Canada entered into discussions with representatives of the Aboriginal Summit of the Northwest Territories, of which the GTC is a member, and the GNWT to seek consensus on how to advance devolution of federal legislative powers, programs and responsibilities for the management of land, waters and natural resources to the Northwest Territories.

.The allocation to the Gwich'in under the federal Aboriginal Human Resources Development Agreement was $920,060.

.Canada, through the Canadian Wildlife Service, developed the Species at Risk legislation which is being studied by a parliamentary committee. The Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board has been involved in the consultation process through appraisal and direct participation in workshops and meetings.

.TheIntegrated Fisheries Management Plan for the Inconnu of the Lower Mackenzie River, a management plan for shared fish populations, was signed. This plan was developed in co-operation with the Inuvialuit and Sahtu land claimant groups.

Return to Table of Contents

3. Implementation Committee

The Implementation Committee is composed of senior officials representing each of the parties.

Committee members are Fred Carmichael, President, GTC who replaced Richard Nerysoo midway through the fiscal year; Mark Warren, Assistant Deputy Minister, Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, GNWT; and Aideen Nabigon, Director, Implementation Management, Indian and Northern Affairs (INAC), Government of Canada.

Pursuant to section 28.2 of the Agreement, the Committee is responsible for:

. overseeing and providing direction to guide the implementation of the Agreement;

. monitoring the status of the Implementation Plan;

. adjusting the schedule for carrying out implementation activities, re-allocating resources and amending the Implementation Plan, when necessary;

. addressing disputes among the parties; and

. preparing an annual report on the implementation of the Agreement for the general public.

During the year, the Committee met three times, in Yellowknife, Inuvik and Ottawa.

3.1 Five-Year General Review of the Gwich'in Implementation Plan

The Implementation Committee continued to work toward resolving the 20 outstanding issues identified during the Five-Year General Review of the Implementation Plan. Ten issues were resolved in 2000-2001, including the following.

Issue 9 - Heritage Resources

On August 11, 2000, Canada agreed to provide the GTCwith additional funding in each of fiscal years 2000-2001, 2001-2002 and 2002-2003 for the identification of Gwich'in heritage sites.

Issue 13 - General Improvements to the Implementation Plan

The Implementation Committee came to agreement on the amendments to the Implementation Plan.

Issue 15 - Implementation Funding for Renewable Resources Councils

On August 11, 2000, Canada stated that it could not consider the Renewable Resources Councils' (RRCs) funding request unless there was substantiated documentation regarding their increased workload. However, the parties agreed to consider the RRCs' concerns during the renegotiation of the Implementation Plan.

3.2 Renegotiation of the Gwich'in Implementation Plan

Pursuant to section 28.2 of the Agreement, the Implementation Committee began its deliberations on implementation beyond the initial 10-year period. At its April meeting, it was agreed that the Committee would not renegotiate the Implementation Plan. Rather, the Committee sent a letter to the parties to the Agreement recommending that each designate its lead for the negotiations and begin discussions as soon as possible. The GNWT and Canada have designated their leads. The GTC confirmed that it intendes to name a negotiator soon.

3.3 Other Activities

The Implementation Committee was active in:

. approving the re-allocation of implementation funding;

. producing its annual report for 1999-2000; and

. overseeing the nomination and appointment process for boards established under the Agreement.

Return to Table of Contents

4. Implementing Bodies

The Agreement provides for the establishment of implementing bodies responsible for managing wildlife resources, conducting environmental impact assessments and reviews of development proposals, planning and regulating land and water use, resolving issues relating to surface entry and compensation, settling disputes related to the interpretation of the Agreement and determining eligibility for participation as beneficiaries of the Agreement. The Implementation Plan sets out the membership, functions and time frame for the establishment of each implementing body.

Progress in establishing these implementing bodies is outlined below.

. The Gwich'in Arbitration Panel, Gwich'in Land and Water Board (GLWB), Gwich'in Land Use Planning Board (GLUPB), Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board (GRRB), RRCs and Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board (MVEIRB) are operational. Current membership of these implementing bodies, excluding the RRCs, is listed in Appendix 1.

. Chapter 26 of the Agreement calls for the establishment of the Surface Rights Board through separate legislation. This quasi-judicial body will have the jurisdiction to resolve disputes between landowners and holders of surface or subsurface commercial interests over entry to the lands and compensation for their use. The Board will consist of members residing in the Northwest Territories (NWT) and, when dealing with Gwich'in lands, shall act through a panel of its members at least one of whom shall be a resident of the Gwich'in Settlement Area (GSA). Since the Surface Rights Board has yet to be created by legislation, relevant surface rights disputes in the GSA may be referred to the Gwich'in Arbitration Panel

4.1 Arbitration Panel

Chapter 6 of the Agreement provides for the establishment of the Arbitration Panel to resolve disputes that arise during the implementation of the Agreement.

The Arbitration Panel has not been called on to arbitrate any disputes since its inception. Panel members did not meet in 2000-2001.

4.2 Gwich'in Land Use Planning Board

The GLUPB is responsible for developing, reviewing and proposing approvals, exceptions and amendments in respect of a land use plan for the GSA. The land use plan will provide for the conservation, development and utilization of land, resources and waters for the benefit of all Canadians, with special attention devoted to the needs of the Gwich'in.

Seeking Approval for the Gwich'in Land Use Plan

The Gwich'in Land Use Plan, Nành' Geenjit Gwitr'it T'igwaa'in, Working for the Land, was completed and received approval from the GTC and the GNWT in 1999. The Government of Canada is the final signatory to the Plan and has yet to approve it. There is concern with a perceived conflict between the provisions of the Plan and the Canada Mining Regulations. Under the zoning rules established in the Plan, permitted activities related to mineral development in Gwich'in conservation areas would only be allowed with an exception or amendment to the Plan.

The GLUPB, INAC and the GTC continued to work on a process to resolve outstanding conflicts.

The Government of Canada provided the GLUPB with an extensive list of comments and suggestions for changes and improvements to the Plan. The Board has reviewed and responded to all the comments and will be proposing changes to the Plan based on the federal government's suggestions. The Board will require approval for the changes from the GTC and the GNWT before the Plan can be implemented.

Continued Planning and Management Activities

Throughout the past year, the GLUPB further developed its policies, procedures and communications strategies. A draft implementation strategy, and draft policies and by-laws related to the implementation of the Plan were completed. As well, draft brochures for communities and businesses detailing the Plan and regulatory process were developed. All draft documents will be finalized after the Plan is approved. The proposed Plan and several maps can be downloaded from the GLUPB web site .

The GLUPB is committed to conducting more detailed planning along the Dempster Highway corridor. An extensive map series along the corridor has been completed, and the Board will be seeking input from stakeholders in the next fiscal year to fulfil its commitments.

The GLUPB worked to initiate and participate in transboundary planning initiatives and discussions. The Board participated in workshops with the Yukon Land Use Planning Council and met with the Mayo District and Tetlit Gwich'in RRCs to discuss opportunities for planning in the Peel River Watershed. It also met with the Sahtu Land Use Planning Board to discuss options to cooperate with community planning processes in the region.

The Board expects to further all these discussions in the upcoming year and looks forward to working with the newly established Vuntut Planning Commission.

A lead role was taken by the GLUPB to advance an integrated resource management agenda in the GSA. The Board also assisted with the development of a framework for an integrated geographic information system (GIS) project and met regularly with the directors and chairs of all institutions of public government (IPGs)to facilitate the integration of activities.

In response to increased oil and gas development in the region, the GLUPB organized a workshop in March to discuss best environmental practices in the industry.Representatives from organizations throughout the Mackenzie Valley and members from the Gwich'in communities participated in the highly successful workshop.Community members clearly highlighted their need to be more involved in, and aware of, the regulatory and development process. In the upcoming year, the IPGs will work together to develop communication and education strategies among the organizations and communities regarding oil and gas development.

4.3 Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board

Board Operations

The GRRB, created pursuant to section 12.8 of the Agreement, completed its seventh year of operation. The Board's mandate is to ensure that wildlife, fish and forests are used in a sustainable manner so they are available today and for future generations. The Board has successfully conducted several research and management projects. As a regional public board responsible for renewable resource management in the GSA, the Board has ensured that the public is involved in renewable resource management programs and has established a good working relationship with other IPGs and government agencies. The Board meets two times per year in one of the Gwich'in communities. During regular meetings in the communities, the Board also meets with the RRCs to discuss local renewable resource management concerns.

Research and Management Projects

To assist with the need for current information on renewable resources in the GSA from which to make informed management decisions, the Board allocated $361,283 to fund 21 research and management projects. Funded projects include:

. caribou (Woodland and Barrenground), Dall's sheep, waterfowl and moose research;

. fisheries projects (Rat River, Trout Lake, Peel River, Mackenzie River);

. forestry research and management projects (four);

. the Gwich'in Environmental Knowledge Project; and

. education and culture projects (four).

By working closely with the RRCs and government agencies,the Board is working toward long-term sustainable use and conservation of wildlife, fish and forestry resources. The Board was involved with RRCs on several communitybased research projects to address local resource management concerns and to build capacity in the area resource research and management in the communities. The Board ensured that community members were involved in approving research and management programs and in field research. Community field assistants made a valuable contribution to research projects.

Renewable Resources Management

Planning for sustainable use of wildlife, fish and forests has been a major focus of the Board and staff. Renewable resource management planning gives communities, the Board and agencies the opportunity to determine how resources will be used and managed. In the past year, the Board assumed a lead role in developing grizzly bear, moose and forest management plans in the GSA. Annually,each RRC receives two grizzly bear tags to allocate to beneficiaries in their community. The Board is now working with the communities to allow resident and guided sporthunting in the GSA. Forest management planning has focussed on establishing forest monitoring plots and planning for future research. The Board will continue implement resource management plans to identify resource use priorities, concerns and management needs.

Gwich'in Harvest Study

The Gwich'in Harvest Study completed its fifth year operation. The Harvest Study will protect Gwich'in hunting, fishing and trapping by setting the Gwich'in Minimum Needs Level, and will provide information for renewable resource management. The Harvest Study relies on the participation of Gwich'in living in the GSA.To provide an incentive for participants, the Harvest Study includes a contest with monthly prizes awarded each community. Harvest information is displayed RRC offices so community members can see the results they become available.

The GRRB requested additional funding from the Implementation Committee to continue the Harvest Study past June 2001. No funds have been identified this time. The Board felt it was important to continue the study as it is a good community monitoring program and will provide valuable information during the current period of oil and gas exploration.

Gwich'in Environmental Knowledge Project

The Gwich'in Environmental Knowledge Project continued work on a second book covering an additional 20 wildlife and fish species. The text has been written and edited, and a layout of the book has been completed. It is expected to be available in the summer of 2001.

Further work has been completed on the traditional/local knowledge database. This database is being increasingly used by the GRRB staff and external organizations.

Education and Training

Education and training of Gwich'in beneficiaries in renewable resources research and management has been a major component of the GRRB operations. The Board has continued or initiated several programs including:

. four full-time, on-the-job training positions (office manager, harvest study assistant, fisheries technician trainee and forest management assistant);

. community interviewers for the Gwich'in Harvest Study and Gwich'in Environmental Knowledge Project (over the last six years, 33 individuals have been trained and employed as community interviewers.);

. summer employment for two to three students in renewable resource research and management projects through the Summer Student Program. Students obtain first-hand work experience and learn about co-management of renewable resources. In 2000-2001, to encourage students to pursue a career in renewable resource management, the Board initiated a high school work experience program where students assisted researchers and monitors with various projects;

. Jim Edwards Sittichinli Scholarships of $1,000 to three college or university students pursuing studies in renewable resources or a related field. This year, three scholarships were awarded;

. staff training to address professional enhancement of staff;

. GRRB participation in community career days, nature days, and science camps and fairs to encourage youth to pursue careers in renewable resource management;

. organization and funding of the Youth Millennium Trek where youth throughout the GSA were taken on a hike, youth and Elders camp, and canoe trek to learn more about the land and traditional uses of the area. This Trek was conducted in association with the larger Millennium Trek to help promote the protection of the Porcupine caribou herd calving area; and

. communications and outreach about the GRRB activities and programs. This information is provided GRRB web site   and in a new monthly newsletter available by mail and through the web site

Working Together to Take Care of the Land

The Agreement requires that the GRRB work as an with Gwich'in and government agencies to ensure responsible renewable resource management. The GRRBestablished good working relationships with IPGs GSA and other land claim areas. The RRCs are the foundation of renewable resource management in the GSA. As such, the GRRB worked closely with the RRCs to ensure their involvement renewable resources research and decision making, facilitated a strategic planning session for these councils.

4.4 Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board

The MVEIRB is the main agency mandated by Mackenzie Valley Resource Management Act (MVRMA)undertake environmental assessment and review Mackenzie Valley. The Board's jurisdiction applies lands in the NWT, excluding the Inuvialuit Settlement Region and Wood Buffalo National Park. The MVRMAreplaces the Canadian Environmental Assessment (CEAA) in the Mackenzie Valley, except under specific circumstances.

Staffing and Location

The Board's offices are located in Yellowknife and a staff of five, including an executive director, two environmental assessment officers, a finance and administrative officer, and a communications officer.

Preliminary Screenings and Environmental Assessments

The Board received 186 notifications of preliminary screenings. Seven preliminary screenings were referred environmental assessment:

. ExplorData Ltd: an amendment to a land use permit for a seismic program near Nahanni Butte;

. Paramount Resources: Bovie Lake exploratory drilling program near Fort Liard;

. Paramount Resources: Arrowhead exploratory drilling program near Fort Liard (Note: this referral and the preceding one from Paramount Resources have combined as the Paramount Liard East Program.);

. Paramount Resources: Cameron Hills exploratory drilling program south of Hay River;

. Canadian Zinc Corporation: Prairie Creek drilling program, and Cat Camp and fuel cache retrieval program (Note: The drilling program has been split into a separate assessment from the Cat Camp and fuel cache retrieval program.);

. Patterson Lumber Ltd: timber cutting licence application near Pine Point; and

. Robinson's Trucking Ltd: land use permit application for the Drybones Bay gravel quarry.

In addition, two ongoing assessments were carried over from the previous year and were completed: the BHP Sable, Beartooth and Pigeon kimberlite pipes, and the Ranger Oil, Chevron Canada and Canadian Forest Oil natural gas pipeline near Fort Liard.

Environmental Impact Assessment Guidelines

The Board revised its Environmental Impact Assessment in the Mackenzie Valley - Interim Guidelines. In addition, the draft Rules of Procedure for Environmental Assessment and Environmental Impact Review Proceedings were revised.

Board Activities

Board members participated in 11 board meetings and 15 teleconferences. These meetings and teleconferences were held to discuss the full schedule of environmental assessments. Board activities included:

. a public meeting in N'dilo as part of the environmental assessment of the BHP Sable, Beartooth and Pigeon kimberlite pipes development;

. a tour of the Diavik site and BHP's Ekati mine site in July to gain a better understanding of the ongoing diamond development activity; and

. several board orientation sessions designed to develop a better understanding of the environmental impact assessment process and board governance.

During the summer, the Board participated in a financial management review with INAC. Subsequently, a determination on funding was reached, resulting in the Board receiving an annual budget of $1.1 million flowed through a Flexible Transfer Payment Agreement which allows surpluses to be carried over to the next fiscal year for implementation activities.

The MVEIRB has a seat on the Cumulative Effects Assessment Management Framework (CEAMF) Working Group comprising various government departments and Aboriginal organizations. This group is developing the framework for defining cumulative assessment in the NWT. In November, the Board brought the northern regulatory and assessment agencies together to work on a "made in the North" approach to a possible application for the construction of a Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline. A meeting followed in December, which included for the first time, the chairs of the resource management boards, the National Energy Board (NEB), the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency, the GNWT and INAC to begin work on co-ordinating the various regulatory and environmental assessment legislation. This work is ongoing.

As a result of applications for oil and gas development in the Fort Liard area, discussions were initiated with the NEB to co-ordinate their respective environmental assessment functions. A memorandum of understanding (MOU) was signed between the MVEIRB and the NEB in December which outlines how the boards will cooperate on oil and gas environmental assessments.

Public Information

Board members had the opportunity to host public information sessions, attend meetings to disseminate information, and build liaisons with other organizations. Staff met with the NEB on several occasions to discuss coordination issues on preliminary screenings and environmental assessments.

The Next 12 Months

There is a possibility that the DeBeers Snap Lake diamond development will be referred for an environmental assessment in the coming year. In addition to environmental assessments of projects referred by the preliminary screeners, Board activities in the next year will include:

. continuation of discussions between various exploration and pipeline companies and staff on the anticipated Mackenzie Valley natural gas pipeline;

. development of MOUs with other regulatory agencies and boards, which operate adjacent to the Mackenzie Valley, to set out processes for transboundary environmental assessments;

. continued work on the MOU with the NEB;

. public consultations on the Environmental Impact Assessment in the Mackenzie Valley - Interim Guidelines; and

. public consultations on the draft Rules of Procedure for Environmental Assessment and Environmental Impact Review Proceedings. Following any required changes arising from the consultation, the document will be adopted by the Board.

4.5 Gwich'in Land and Water Board

The GLWB is the regulatory authority identified under the Agreement and given effect by the MVRMA to regulate land and water use throughout the GSA.

The mandate of the Board is to provide for conservation,development and utilization of land and water resources in the GSA in a manner that will provide the optimum benefit for present and future residents of the GSA, the Mackenzie Valley and all Canadians. The Act authorizes the Board to regulate the use of land and water by issuing, amending, renewing and suspending land use permits and water licences throughout the GSA, including all Crown, Gwich'in and other private lands.

The Board consists of five members. The GTC nominates two members, and two members are nominated by the governments of the NWT and Canada. The four members then nominate a chair. All members are appointed by the Government of Canada for a three-year term.

GLWB staff include an executive director, integrated resource manager, GIS technician, land and water technician and office manager.

In this second year of full operation of the Board, there were 13 applications for land use permits, including one which was withdrawn by the applicant. Two applications for water licences were approved. It is expected that the number of permits and licence applications will increase throughout 2001 due to the increased interest in oil and gas exploration in the GSA.

Board objectives for the coming year include, but are not limited to:

. maintaining an efficient and timely method of processing land use permits and water licences in the GSA;

. continuing to employ and train qualified First Nations people;

. continuing to develop a more effective communication process with the Gwich'in communities; and

. continuing to work with other IPGs in the GSA and elsewhere to provide for an integrated and co-ordinated system of land management in the Mackenzie Valley.

Return to Table of Contents

5. Gwich'in Tribal Council

The GTC is the organization mandated by the Agreement to represent Gwich'in beneficiaries on the Implementation Committee and to ensure the protection of Gwich'in rights and interests as outlined in the Agreement. Since its incorporation in 1992, the GTC has made steady progress in establishing an integrated resource management framework in the Mackenzie Valley as required by the Agreement. Some key implementation activities undertaken by the GTC are described below.

5.1 Enrolment Board

As required by Chapter 4 of the Agreement, after the initial five-year enrolment period, the GTC assumed responsibility for the enrolment function, including the production of the annual register for years six through ten of the implementation period. The Enrolment Registry now lists 2,466 participants, an increase of 2.2 percent over last year. The GTC is responsible for project funding and maintenance costs.

5.2 Cumulative Impact Monitoring Program

The GTC participated in all Cumulative Impact Monitoring (CIM ) program steering committee meetings and, with the GRRB, defined the method for the incorporation of traditional knowledge, communities and Elders into the CIM program.

For the 2000-2001 fiscal year, $350,000 was requested for the CIM program. Unfortunately, only $100,000 was allocated. This drastically stalled finalizing the development of a long-term work plan and the implementation of the 12 tasks identified in the draft work plan.

5.3 Cumulative Effects Assessment Management Framework

In December 1999, the Minister of the Environment and the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development committed to the creation of a framework to aid in the development of cumulative effects assessment management for the NWT. A working group of Aboriginal government, industry and non-government representatives was struck to formulate a work plan to assist in the creation of this framework. The GTC was one of the original members of the working group.

In January, the GTC withdrew from the working group as the GTC representative felt the group had exceeded its mandate, and there was a lack of clarity on the role of the CEAMF in relation to the implementation of Part VI of the MVRMA. The GTC's position is that the most effective way of ensuring compliance with a CIM 

5.4 Consultations on the Yukon Development Assessment Process

The Yukon Development Assessment Process (YDAP) will assess the environmental and socio-economic effects of activities in Yukon, such as mining, logging, tourism and, more recently, oil and gas developments. These sorts of assessments are carried out for projects under federal jurisdiction through the CEAA process, and YDAP will expand this scope to include projects on all lands in the territory under First Nation, territorial or federal jurisdiction.

Over the course of the year, the GTC received copies of the draft YDAP legislation for review and comment, and held discussions on specific points with the Federal Lead Development Assessment Process Negotiator. The GTC continues to press for authority in the YDAP legislation to nominate a member to the Yukon Development Assessment Board when a Gwich'in primary use area is the subject of the Board's deliberation.

The GTC has been involved in discussions relating to the implementation of the YDAP legislation through the YDAP Implementation Planning Committee (IPC). The GTC believes it should participate in these discussions in order to be satisfied that YDAP will function effectively. The Government of Canada has pointed out that any discussions relating to GTC funding for implementing YDAP should be carried out through the Implementation Committee as provided for in the Implementation Plan.

The GTC actively participated in Implementation Planning Committee\n(YDAP) discussions whenever possible, continued to review drafts of the legislation and met with senior INAC officials to discuss its concerns. Draft legislation continued to be reviewed by the GTC.Several comments related to the potential oil and gas developments in Yukon were made.

5.5 Yukon Devolution

The GTC is negotiating a communications protocol which will govern the relationship of the two parties under the proposed Yukon Environmental Assessment Act which will come into force after devolution. The GTC met with representatives of Canada on two occasions over the last year for discussions on the Devolution Transfer Agreement.

5.6 Beaufort-Delta Self-Government Negotiations

Chapter 5 of the Agreement provides for negotiations between governments and the GTC to conclude selfgovernment agreements. Appendix B of the Agreement details subject matters for negotiation. The work plan for the negotiation process was aided by the establishment of legal, implementation and taxation working groups.During the year, a conceptual agreement on a selfgovernment Agreement-in-Principle (AIP) was achieved.

Subject areas in the negotiation process included governing structures, education and training, culture, language and heritage resources, social services, income support, health services, program infrastructure, justice and policing, taxation and financial arrangements. As well, negotiations were undertaken in the areas of dispute resolution, review and amendment, intergovernmental relations, transition and ratification of the AIP.

All concepts in the AIP have been agreed to by the negotiators subject to continued legal drafting and internal reviews. The Gwich'in and Inuvialuit negotiators presented the draft AIP to the board of directors and all leaders within the region. Issues raised during the internal reviews were addressed by the negotiators.

Planning was initiated by the self-government office to meet conditions necessary to complete a final agreement, including the full engagement of communities in developing their constitutions, implementation plans and budgets, and the provision of sufficient resources to prepare and create the new governments and maintain current programs and services.

5.7 Land Use Plan

The Gwich'in Land Use Plan was finalized by the GLUPB in 1999. It was approved by the GTC in the same year.Since that time, the GTC has been working alongside the GLUPB to gain federal approval for the Plan. During 2000-2001, positive steps were taken to resolve the conflict arising from the Plan. An MOU with options to resolve the impasse was put forward. Unfortunately, to date no official response has been delivered by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development. The GTC continues to lobby INAC for an official response.

5.8 Gwich'in Land Administration

The administration, management and control of Gwich'in lands is the responsibility of the Gwich'in Land Administration (GLA), stemming from section 18.1.6 of the Agreement. Activities on Gwich'in lands include gravel pits/rock quarries, oil and gas exploration, development and reclamation, timber harvesting in its several forms, scientific research, recreational access ranging from casual hikers to long-term cottagers, and government access ranging from military exercises to gravel road maintenance.

The GLA also develops land management procedures and policies for the GTC. A file key and filing system were developed and a lands registry initiated.This lands registry has the capacity to link to the GIS mapping in place for the GSA. With the activities linked to mapping, any number of inquiries can be made and corresponding maps, charts and graphs produced. In the upcoming year, the following goals are anticipated:

.establish management plans for gravel pits;

.develop an information kit for industrial applicants;

.review and formalize the fee schedule;

.reorganize the GLA offices to increase efficiency;

.develop a Gwich'in Impact Development Agreement format in anticipation of increased oil and gas activities; and

.train environmental monitors to oversee activities on the Gwich'in lands.

5.9 Renewable Resources Management

The mandate of the GTC renewable resources manager is to ensure that the interests of the Gwich'in communities are included and respected during renewable resources management and planning within the GSA. Several projects were initiated or continued during the year.

Wildlife Act Reviews

The governments of the NWT and Yukon are in the process of reviewing their respective wildlife acts. Comments on the current wildlife acts have been provided to the review processes along with recommendations for the new legislation. The renewable resources manager has also monitored the process to ensure community input throughout the review.

Forest Management Plan

The GTC, the GRRB and the GNWT jointly prepared the draft Forest Management Plan. This Plan provides a basis for further, more detailed planning for each of the four Gwich'in communities.

Renewable Resource Council Policy Manual

The GTC produced an RRCs policy manual to assist RRCs counsellors with their day-to-day activities. The manual provides information about all pertinent organizations, and detailed roles and responsibilities for various processes.

Wildlife Management and Strategies

The renewable resources manager monitored the development of all GRRB wildlife management activities and provided feedback to their initiatives. A Dall's sheep sport hunting initiative, which included community consultation, was developed by the GTC.This project will examine the financial potential and community interest in a resident and non-resident sport hunting harvest of Dall's sheep in the Richardson Mountains.

5.10 Renewable Resources Councils

The RRCss were established through designated Gwich'in organizations in each of the four Gwich'in communities.Their role is to promote local involvement in conservation programs, harvest studies, research and wildlife, and forest management. During the year, the RRCss continued to assist the GRRB with its wildlife management and planning capacities. They aided in the development of the draft Forest Management Plan and provided feedback to the GLA and the GLWB during land use permit reviews.The RRCss also had the responsibility to issue permits for non-commercial tree harvesting and recreational use on Gwich'in lands.

5.11 Environmental Contaminants

The Gwich'in consume traditional foods as a main staple of their diet. Due to concerns from communities regarding long-range and local-source contaminants in the food chain, the environmental contaminants co-ordinator, in conjunction with scientists, established research programs to investigate these issues. The co-ordinator also communicated the Gwich'in concerns to the Northern Contaminants Program (NCP) which was created to study contaminant levels in the northern environment that are released from industrial and agricultural activities in the south.

This was the second year the GTC has participated in the NCP. The co-ordinator completed a Peel River FishContaminant Study of fish obtained from Fort McPherson,NWT and initiated a similar project for Tsiigehtchic,NWT.

Three proposals have been submitted for funding, including a beaver and muskrat contaminant uptake study,regional contaminants co-ordinator and a regional health workshop. The co-ordinator communicated information on contaminants to the communities, attended workshops and meetings, and was involved in non-NCPrelated environmental programs in an advisory capacity on behalf of the GTC. These programs include YDAP,Cumulative Effects Assessment, the Fort McPherson Deep Water Lake Project, the Peel-Caribou River Remediation Project, Climate Change Exchange, NWTWildlife Act amendments, Yukon Wildlife Act amendments and Dempster Highway hunting regulations.

The co-ordinator has raised the level of awareness of theGwich'in regarding local, national and international contaminant issues. The report, 1999 Peel River Fish Contaminant Study, was produced in conjunction with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans (DFO). Funding has been secured for the co-ordinator position in 2001-2002 and for two projects: Tsiigehtchic Fish Study, and Beaver and Muskrat Uptake of Contaminants in the Mackenzie Valley. As well, INAC and Shell Oil have committed to a site clean up in the Peel-Caribou River Remediation Project.

The co-ordinator position has proven to be an integral part of the GTC and the NCP. Key functions related to addressing contaminant-related issues are gathering, organizing and distributing information, and the initiation of research programs.

5.12 NWT Protected Area Strategy

The NWT Protected Area Strategy (PAS) was ratified in 1999 by the federal and territorial governments and NWT Aboriginal partners.

During the year, the GTC compiled a comprehensive list of community-identified priority areas for legislated protection. Several community consultation workshops were held to provide information and receive feedback. Due to the delay in the signing of the Gwich'in Land Use Plan, the GTC has been unsuccessful in determining if and where areas for legislative protection may be appropriate and acceptable to communities and Gwich'in leadership.

5.13 Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute

Gwich'in Language Plan

The GNWT recently devolved funding and responsibility for language programs to the Aboriginal language groups in the NWT. The Gwich'in Social and Cultural Institute (GSCI) began implementation of the five-year Gwich'in Language Plan developed in consultation with Gwich'in communities, organizations, local schools and government. The projects funded included the Gwich'in dictionary, the Gwichya Gwich'in history book, community language initiative projects, the Gwich'in ethnobotany book and the Gwich'in Elders biography project.

Repatriation and Replication of Gwich'in Traditional Clothing Project

The GSCI, in partnership with the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre, has begun the replication of a 19th century Gwich'in man's summer caribou skin outfit currently housed in the Canadian Museum of Civilization. The clothing is being replicated by seamstresses from the four Gwich'in communities and Yellowknife. Using traditional materials and methods of construction and decoration, five copies of the clothing are being reproduced - one set for each of the four communities for educational and display purposes, and one set for the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre for exhibit and collection purposes. All stages of the project are being documented by a local filmmaker, with the intention of producing an educational video. The five sets of clothing will be completed by the summer of 2001.

Gwich'in Elders' Biographies Research Project

Seven of the oldest Elders in the four Gwich'in communities were interviewed about their life histories by a Master's student from Trent University. The information from these interviews and others was used for the GSCI's 2001 Elders calendar. The GSCI hopes to conduct further interviews with other Gwich'in Elders with the intentions of publishing a book for use in the schools and developing additional calendars.

Peel River Archaeological Survey

A month of ethno-archaeological research was carried out in the Peel River Plateau area by the GSCI and Teetl'it Gwich'in Council in partnership with the University of Alberta. Support for the project was provided by Parks Canada, INAC, the Aurora Research Institute,Yukon PAS, the GTC, the Teetl'it Gwichin RRCs, the GRRB, Fort McPherson Hamlet, the Anglican Church,the Tl'oondih Healing Society and the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre.

The Peel River Plateau was traditionally used by the Teetl'it Gwich'in who now live primarily in Fort McPherson. The project began with an inventory of the area, involving a helicopter survey and a two-week river survey, and was followed by a week of test excavations of a fur trade site in the community of Fort McPherson. At the completion of this project, a photo exhibit was created to be used for display at the Midway Festival in 2001. A poster was also developed for distribution to the communities and the funding organizations.Information collected during this project will now be used to identify and enhance new national historic sites and protected areas.

Nagwichoonjik National Historic Site Project

Nagwichoonjik (the Gwich'in part of the Mackenzie River between Thunder River and Point Separation) is a national historic site. It is unique in Canada in that it is one of the largest such sites, stretching for 170 kilometres along the Mackenzie River and is among the first such sites designated using the concept of cultural landscapes.

The Nagwichoonjik Community Steering Committee finalized the text for the plaque which will be erected in the community of Tsiigehtchic to commemorate this historic site. A commemorative integrity statement was also drafted and will be finalized in the next fiscal year so the management plan and cost-sharing agreement can be finalized.

Tape and Photo Archive Project

Working with the Gwich'in Language Program, the GSCI began the process of ensuring that its large collection of oral history tapes, photos and slides are translated, transcribed, catalogued and archived with duplicates deposited in the territorial archives. To make this material more readily available to Gwich'in beneficiaries and the schools, the GSCI is setting up a listening area at the cultural centre where people can come to listen to their relatives speak about the land and the culture.

Gwichya Gwich'in History Book

The land and history book, Googwandak: A History of the Gwichya Gwich'in and of Tsiigehtchic, was completed and will be printed in the next fiscal year. This unique document recounts the land use and culture of the Gwichya Gwich'in through oral history, archival, published and archeological information collected since 1992. It contains over 100 photos, maps and diagrams, and will be a unique contribution to the northern literature and an invaluable teaching resource. It was funded by Parks Canada, the Millennium Fund, the GNWT Department of Education, Culture and Employment, the Beaufort Delta Education Council, the Gwichya Gwich'in RRCs and the Tsiigehtchic District Education Authority. This is the first in a series of Gwich'in community and land-based history books that will be completed over the next 10 years.

Gwich'in Ethnobotany Book

The GSCI, Parks Canada and Gwich'in Elders published a book in March about Gwich'in traditional use of plants for food, medicine, shelter and tools. This book includes information on the Gwich'in names for these plants, where they can be found and how they can be used. A few recipes are included for making medicines.

Gwich'in Volunteer Storybook

The GSCI, in partnership with the GNWT Department of Municipal and Community Affairs (MACA), researched and drafted a children's storybook on a wedding which took place at the mouth of the Peel village in 1999. This storybook is targeted for grades 3 through 6, with text in Gwich'in and English so it can be used as a teaching resource for Gwich'in language teachers. It is being produced to commemorate 2001 as the International Year of Volunteers. This book will be illustrated, translated into Gwich'in and ready for publication in 2001-2002.

Gwich'in Traditional Knowledge Policy

The GSCI drafted the Gwich'in Traditional Knowledge Policy in consultation with Gwich'in communities, organizations, IPGs and government. This draft is being reviewed by the GTC. Once approved, it will be available to the public and will guide all traditional knowledge research carried out in the GSA in both the NWT and Yukon.

Other Activities

The GSCI continued to review land and water applications on behalf of the GLWB and GLA, and provided advice on their possible impact on heritage resources in the GSA. Discussions have begun with the GLA on the development of a heritage layer for the GIS . The GSCI continued to provide input into the PAS, which is being developed in the GSA and in Yukon (primary and secondary use areas).A member of a Gwich'in working group is working to further this initiative.

Information was provided to the public, as requested, and presentations were made to schools and conferences.

5.14 GTC Web Site

The GTC developed a web site   which provides information about the roles and responsibilities of the GTC and the organizations under its umbrella.

Return to Table of Contents

6. Government of the Northwest Territories

The GNWT performed various implementation activities pursuant to the Gwich'in Implementation Plan and related funding agreements.

6.1 Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs

The Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs (MAA) worked closely with the GTC , federal and officials, and the various implementing bodies pursuant to the Agreement.The Ministry co-ordinated the implementation activities of all departments, prepared regular status reports for the Implementation Committee and prepared the component of this annual report.

A Ministry official actively participated as the representative on the Implementation Committee dealing withsuch issues as:

. the approval process for the Gwich'in Land Use Plan;

. the implementation of the Five-Year General Review recommendations;

. the economic measures provisions of the Agreement;

. the municipal tax rebates for beneficiaries;

. the GRRB Gwich'in Harvest Study; and

. the reallocation of implementation resources. In conjunction with Implementation Committee meetings held in Yellowknife in April, Ministry officials co-ordinated a joint Gwich'in/Sahtu Implementation Committee workshop to discuss operating procedures and a formal procedures manual for the Implementation Committee. In accordance with Chapter 5 and Appendix B of the Agreement, the Ministry participated in the Beaufort-Delta self-government negotiations which are moving toward an AIP.

The Ministry developed a web site which provides information on the negotiation and implementation of land, resources and self-government agreements in the NWT.

6.2 Municipal and Community Affairs

MACA and the GTC signed an MOU allowing the to access Deep Water Lake, which is on Gwich'in lands, to construct a community water supply facility for Fort McPherson.

MACA paid quarterly resource royalties to the GTC and drafted the Homeowner's Property Tax Rebate form to assist beneficiaries in applying for municipal property tax rebates.

6.3 Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development

The Department of Resources, Wildlife and Economic Development (RWED) of the continued to meet its obligations through ongoing consultation with the GTC , designated Gwich'in organizations and RRCs.The Department also worked closely with the GRRB, the GLUPB, the GLWB,, the GSCI and the Gwich'in Development Corporation. RWED promotes, assists with and advises these bodies on wildlife management, forest management, resource development and economic development issues.

Education, Training and Career Development

Education, training and career development remained a departmental priority. In support of these priorities, the Department provided assistance to various Gwich'in organizations for numerous initiatives including youth land-based conservation programs, participation at the Fifth Annual Mining Symposium, and travel to various oil and gas conferences. RWED developed a guide training program with participation from Gwich'in/Inuvialuit organizations and other government departments. RWED also provided funding to the GTCRWED.

Economic Development

RWED continued to work in close co-operation and consultation with the GTC and the Gwich'in communities to support and encourage beneficiary involvement in business development and employment opportunities leading to economic self-sufficiency. The Department provided business advice, counselling and support, and assisted Gwich'in businesses and individuals to gain access to financial support from various sources.

Forest Management

The GRRB, the GTC and RWED established the Forest Advisory Committee to oversee the Forest Management Plan. Consultations continued with the RRCs regarding this Plan. RWED worked in co-operation with the GRRB and the GTC to host community forest use planning workshops in Inuvik, Fort McPherson and Tsiigehtchic. A three-year contract, valued at $93,000 per year, was negotiated with the Red River Incorporated Band to provide forest management services.

NWT Wildlife Act

RWED worked very closely with the appropriate Gwich'in organizations on drafting a new NWT Wildlife Act that incorporates the Agreement and the new Species at Risk legislation. RWED also worked with these Gwich'in organizations to develop draft regulations for harvesting Porcupine caribou along the Dempster Highway and drafted legislation for harvesting grizzly bears in the GSA.

Bluenose Caribou Satellite Tracking

The fifth year of the caribou satellite tracking program was completed. Maps showing the location and movement of the collared caribou were provided on a regular basis to the 12 user communities and the IPGs. The project was cofunded by the GRRB, the Sahtu Renewable Resources Board, the Nunavut Wildlife Management Board and Parks Canada.

Park Master Plan

The Gwich'in Territorial Park Master Plan continued to be implemented. Contracts totalling $85,000 were sole sourced to the Gwich'in Development Corporation for developing camping loops, and constructing wood and water sheds, picnic tables, fire pits and camp markers. The annual general maintenance contract for Gwich'in Territorial Park, valued at $20,921, was sole sourced to Chii Construction Ltd. of Inuvik. The Department continued to have a Gwich'in beneficiary in the seasonal parks officer position.

6.4 Education, Culture and Employment

Education, Culture and Employment co-ordinated several education, culture and employment support programs in the GSA. The Healthy Children Initiative and Early Childhood programs provided training to Gwich'in Aklavik, Fort McPherson, Tsiigehtchic and Inuvik. Support from the Oral Traditions Cultural Enhancement Program provided for the delivery of a science camp for Gwich'in students. The Department provided funding for the community employment officer positions in Aklavik and Fort McPherson, and the Working Together projects in all communities. Funding was also provided to the Training on the Job contracts and Apprenticeship Training on the Job contracts in all communities, and the Income Support contracts in Fort McPherson and Aklavik.

The Culture, Heritage and Languages Division provided funding and professional support to the GSCI to assist with the repatriation and reclamation of the knowledge and skills of making traditional skin clothing. Skin clothing from the Canadian Museum of Civilization was loaned to the Prince of Wales Northern Heritage Centre where it was studied by curators and Gwich'in seamstresses.Workshops teaching the skills to make accurate replicas were held in all Gwich'in communities.

The Department provided ongoing advice to the GLWB, and the GSCI on possible impacts of land use operations on heritage sites.

6.5 Justice

The Legal Division continued to provide support for the implementation of the Agreement through legal advice and assistance as required by departments.

6.6 Public Works and Services

In support of the economic measures provisions in Chapter 10 of the Agreement, and consistent with the preferential contracting policies and procedures intended to maximize local, regional and northern employment and business opportunities, the following negotiated contracts were awarded:

. a $715,000 contract to the Gwich'in Development Corporation for a water truck-fill station at Deep Water Lake; and

. a $565,000 multi-year contract to 4801 NWT Ltd., a partnership of the Nihtat Gwich'in Development Corporation and Ummarmiut Development Corporation. The contract was for the schematic and foundation design of the new Inuvik hospital. Work valued at $292,000 was completed in 2000-2001.

The following sole-source contracts were awarded:

. two contracts totalling $85,000 to the Gwich'in Development Corporation for picnic tables and other park facilities at Gwich'in Territorial Park;

. one contract for $21,000 to McDonald Bros. Electric Ltd. for a telecommunications upgrade at the Chief Paul Niditchie School in Tsiigehtchic; and

. three contracts totalling $12,000 to Chii Construction Ltd. for maintenance of the Campbell, Caribou and Cabin Creek campgrounds.

6.7 Transportation

The Department of Transportation and the GTC agreed to develop a pit management plan for the Frog Creek granular source. The Department completed the initial fieldwork, including the drilling of 19 test holes and excavating 18 test pits. The Department will draft a plan incorporating recommendations put forward by the GTC. Projected completion of the plans for implementation by the GTC is May 31, 2001.

Return to Table of Contents

7. Government of Canada

7.1 Economic Activity and Employment

Human Resources Development Canada

Government economic activities in the GSA are structured to ensure the traditional economy is maintained and strengthened, and to work toward economic self-sufficiency of the Gwich'in. The GTC is a signatory to the Aboriginal Human Resources Development Agreement (AHRDA).This five-year contribution agreement, signed in April 1999 and extending to 2004, provides funding for labour market training for Aboriginal residents of the GSA. The agreement also provides funding for child-care initiatives to increase the supply of quality child-care services for children of working or training parents who reside in the GSA.

The AHRDA enables the Gwich'in to design and deliver a full-service menu of options by integrating several Aboriginal programs including labour market programming and services, capacity building, an urban Aboriginal component, youth programming, child-care programs and programs for persons with disabilities. Annual funding totals $920,060.

Human Resources Development Canada (HRDC) has an obligation to support the Land Claim Agreement, and Gwich'in self-government aspirations through its existing programs and the AHRDA, and to maintain an ongoing dialogue with the Gwich'in with respect to their operations or activities under the AHRDA. HRDC officials in the NWT communicate with Gwich'in AHRDA officials frequently to discuss operational issues, clarify and define various clauses of the AHRDA and provide advice on implementing aspects of the agreement. A Human Resources Centre of Canada is located in Inuvik which provides employers and job seekers with information on available programs and services provided by HRDC and the Human Resources Centre.

Industry Canada

Industry Canada continued to deliver its Aboriginal Business Canada program in the GSA through the Metis Dene Development Fund. This program is available to all persons of Aboriginal descent. The program's strategic priorities are youth, tourism, innovation and market expansion. Several individuals and companies used the program with the largest being Tetlit Services Cooperative in Fort McPherson.

Public Works and Government Services Canada

Public Works and Government Services Canada (PWGSC)continued to provide opportunities to bid on government contracts by advertising procurement opportunities on the government electronic tendering system and by notifying all claimant groups of procurement of goods, services and construction destined for the GSA. The implementation policy with respect to the Agreement requires that whenever PWGSC has a procurement opportunity which affects one or more of the comprehensive land claim agreements, notification is forwarded to the claimant groups.

Assistance and information on the procurement process was provided as requested during the year, as well as information on contracts. Whenever it was practical and consistent with sound procurement principles, PWGSC recommended that bid evaluation criteria be included in bid solicitations to maximize socio-economic benefits to the claimant groups.

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

The following resources were provided to Gwich'in bands and organizations to support the traditional economy and encourage employment.

Tetlit Gwich'in Band

. $80,262 from the Community Economic Development Program and $5,000 from the Regional Opportunities Program to assist with the planning and implementation of a business opportunity. Gwichya Gwich'in Band

. $34,358 from the Community Economic Development Program.

. $15,000 from the Regional Opportunities Program.

Aklavik Band

. $36,890 from the Community Economic Development Program.

Inuvik Native Band

. $27,905 from the Community Economic Development Program


. $8,000 from the First Nation Forestry Program to develop a community forest use plan for part of the GSA.

National Energy Board

NEB has a specific responsibility under Chapter 23 of the Agreement for the expropriation of settlement lands required for pipeline facilities and electrical transmission rights-of-way that are judged to be in the public convenience and necessity. The Board has not been required to deal with any activities under this chapter to date.

During the year, NEB staff have been involved in several activities directed to facilitating implementation of the Agreement, although these activities are not formally required by the Agreement. The GLWB was provided with advice for completing its first environmental screening of an oil and gas project. Staff also met with GTCrepresentatives to explain the Board's regulatory role with regard to northern oil and gas activities and its responsibilitiesunder the Agreement.

The NEB continued to be supportive of the implementation of the MVRMA. In December, the NEB and the MVEIRB signed an MOU to establish a co-operative framework within which each party can exercise its respective jurisdiction over environmental impact assessments.At a broader, geographic level, the various boards and agencies responsible for assessing and regulating energy developments in the NWT issued a document in March entitled Guidance on Provision of a Preliminary Information Package for Gas Development in the NWT. The purpose of this document is to ensure information is available to assist the various bodies in a timely evaluation of potential approaches for a co-ordinated review process for gas development and pipeline proposals. The GLWB, Sahtu Land and Water Board, the MVEIRB and the NEB were among the parties to this agreement.

7.2 Environmental and Wildlife Management

Environment Canada

From the standpoint of renewable resources management, including the operation of the GRRB , 2000-2001 was another successful year. A range of wildlife/fisheries/forestry research and monitoring projects were completed and progress/final reports were prepared. Several GRRB training positions were funded by the Canadian Wildlife Service (CWS). Gwich'in beneficiaries continued to be an integral element of GRRB operations. The GRRB participated in a number of departmental workshops and conferences.

The CWS was involved in a number of activities related to the management of wildlife, including representation on the Harvest Study Working Group. This working group provides harvesting information to the GRRB .One outcome of the harvest study will be the establishment of a total allowable harvest of migratory birds in the GSA.

The CWS, through its seat on the GRRB ,has provided the following services.

Harvest of Migratory Game Birds

. The GRRB is advised of all changes to migratory bird regulations that may impact the Gwich'in. These regulations cover topics such as the use of non-toxic bird shot and the proposed spring hunting season.

. Annual migratory bird harvest statistics are compiled by the CWS and the United States Fish and Wildlife Service. The setting of a total allowable harvest for migratory birds has not been discussed by the GRRB .However, it is expected that the harvest study will provide information from which the GRRB could determine a total allowable harvest.

Management of Migratory Wildlife Species

. The CWS communicates with the GRRB on relevant issues discussed by the Arctic Goose Working Group of the Arctic Goose Joint Venture (AGJV).The AGJV is a co-operative Canada-United States body that co-ordinates goose management and research in both countries. The CWS, through its seat on the Working Group, kept the Board informed of the Group's activities regarding the overpopulation of snow geese in the Arctic. This overpopulation mainly affects the Central Arctic. The Gwich'in harvest snow geese from the Western Arctic population where the problem does not appear to be as severe.

. The CWS, through its seats on the various flyway committees, the North American Waterfowl Management Plan and other international initiatives, is involved closely in the management of migratory bird species that cross international boundaries. The GRRB was routinely apprised of issues arising from these international initiatives that may affect the Gwich'in.

. The CWS had continued involvement in the management of other migratory species which cross international boundaries. Through its seat on the GRRB ,has participated in the preparation of management plans for the Bluenose caribou herd and the Barren Ground grizzly bears, both of which move in and out of the GSA. The CWS is also represented on the Porcupine Caribou Management Board whose activities are directed to the Porcupine caribou which move between Canada and the United States and are harvested by both NWT and Yukon Gwich'in.

Wildlife Research

. The CWS assisted in the planning and initial field investigations of a GRRB research project to examine the reproductive ecology of Lesser Scaup and Scoter species.

Mackenzie Valley Environmental Assessment

. The CWS has provided environmental assessment advice to the GLWB on activities in the GSA. The CWS has also provided advice and input to the MVEIRB on a number of procedural and environmental matters.

Species at Risk Legislation

. As a signatory to the International Biodiversity Convention and other international conservation initiatives, Canada is obliged to take steps that ensure the continued viability of all wildlife species within its borders. Consequently Canada, through CWS, developed the Species at Risk legislation which is being studied by a parliamentary committee. The GRRB was involved in the consultation process by means of regular appraisal and direct participation in workshops and meetings. It is anticipated that this legislation will receive third reading in November 2001.

Department of Fisheries and Oceans

DFO has provided input on fisheries management issues through attendance at GRRB meetings, consultation on legislation and policies, and the development of migratory species plans, specifically the inconnu management plan.

DFO continued to issue commercial fisheries licences;however, a new commercial fishing licensing regime is being considered for the GSA. DFO contributed funds for a GRRB fisheries technician. The RRCs were consulted and involved in research projects as per terms of the Agreement. Six community workers were hired and seven meetings were attended by DFO.

From a fisheries perspective, the highlight of the fiscal year was the signing of the Integrated Fisheries Management Plan for the Inconnu of the Lower Mackenzie River, a management plan for shared fish populations. This plan was developed in co-operation with the Inuvialuit and Sahtu land claimant groups.

The Canadian Coast Guard provided the Aids to Navigation Service on the Mackenzie River in the GSA from June 1 to about October 10. With respect to land administration activities of the Coast Guard, eight applications for reserves (land sites) were submitted and were pending at year end. Two sites have been reserved for more than 10 years and are still in use. Applications were pending to renew these reserves.

DFO contributed $57,194 in implementation funding during the year. This included support, consultation, harvester involvement and project funds.

Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency

The Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency continued to work with INAC to clarify the relationship between the MVRMA and the CEAA 

7.3 Heritage

Canadian Heritage

The Agreement provides for the active involvement of the Gwich'in in the conservation and management of Gwich'in heritage resources, as traditional culture and history are priorities to the Gwichya Gwich'in. Parks Canada worked with the GSCI to complete a commemorative integrity statement for the Nagwichoonjik National Historic Site of Canada. A draft statement is near completion. Parks Canada assisted the GSCI in the preparation of a plaque for this site.

Parks Canada, Aurora College and the GSCI have completed the Gwich'in ethnobotany book. The GSCI received funding from Parks Canada to conduct an archeological survey of the Peel River Plateau near Fort McPherson. This project was successfully completed and a report and posters were submitted to Parks Canada. The GSCIwas funded for a project which is integrating oral history and archeological data to provide a more complete understanding of Teetl'it Gwich'in culture and history.

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

The existing NWT Lands Act includes mandatory consideration of heritage resources before issuance of land permits.The obligation to issue land use permits lies with the GLWB. INAC must also comply when recommending terms and conditions.

7.4 Land and Water Management

Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

The NWT regional office continued to co-ordinate INAC's technical input to environmental assessments undertaken by the MVEIRB. INAC co-ordinated, on a ongoing basis, the input of applicable federal departments in responding to MVEIRB determinations on environmental assessments.

Sand and Gravel Resources

The NWT regional office provided quarterly reports on the quarry royalties collected in the Mackenzie Valley. No changes in the quarry royalty regime were considered

Land Use Planning

Following the submission of the Gwich'in Land Use Plan for approval pursuant to section 43.4 of the MVRMA, progress was made in resolving several concerns thatINAC had with the Plan. The acronym title ="Northwest Territories">NWT region and headquarters continued to work with the GLUPB,, the GNWT and the GTC on the outstanding issues in order to facilitate approval of the Plan by the Minister of Indian Affairs and Northern Development.

Land and Water Use Process

The North Mackenzie district office continued to work with the GLWB in recommending terms and conditions on applications for land use permits and water licences, and provided, on an ongoing basis, inspection services to the GLWB to ensure compliance with the terms attached to the authority.

Natural Resources Canada

All program activities for Natural Resources Canada, Legal Surveys Division were completed. No surveys are outstanding under the Agreement. The majority of the survey plans are registered in the Land Titles Office, with a few remaining in the process.

7.5 Canada Customs and Revenue Agency

The Canada Customs and Revenue Agency (formerly known as Revenue Canada) has responsibilities under the Agreement that include provision of general information on the taxation implications for the settlement corporations, and the preparation of an information document on this topic. The draft of this information document dealing with settlement corporations and related tax aspects was completed and forwarded to the GTC in the previous fiscal year. No feedback on this report has been received.

7.6 Federal Co-ordination of Implementation Activities

The Implementation Branch (IB) of INAC co-ordinates the fulfilment of federal government responsibilities pursuant to the Agreement. In 2000-2001, the Branch continued to participate in the three-party Implementation Committee, and to consult with the GNWT and GTC regarding the implementation of Canada's obligations under the Agreement. It continued to serve as the secretariat to the Implementation Committee which held its meetings on April 4, August 30 to 31, and December 13, 2000.

The IB is responsible for maintaining regular contact with all federal government departments and agencies with respect to their implementation activities, intervening as necessary, and maintaining a comprehensive implementation status report on its automated Land Claims Obligations System.

In addition to consulting with implementing bodies to assess their funding requirements to year end and making recommendations on funding re-allocations to fiscal year 2001-2002, the Branch continued to review the budgets of, and manage Flexible Transfer Payment agreements with, implementing bodies during 2000-2001. The IB also processed Order-in-Council and ministerial appointments of individuals to various implementing bodies created under the Agreement. During the fiscal year, appointments were made to the GLWB and MVEIRB.

The 2000-2001 fiscal year was the first in which the Flexible Transfer Payment instrument was used to flow funding to implementing bodies created under the Agreement. The implementing bodies are now able to carry over funds from one fiscal year to the next to be used for future implementation activities.

The IB followed up on the outstanding recommendations contained within the Five-Year General Review. The Branch also co-ordinated the preparation of the annual report for 1999-2000.

In January, the IB hosted a very successful federal interdepartmental workshop with departments and agencies involved in implementing land claim agreements. The twoday session included discussions on the concerns and challenges faced when ensuring implementation obligations.

7.7 Other Implementation Activities

Cumulative Impact Monitoring

As required in Part VI of the MVRMA, a CIM program and an independent environmental audit continued to developed through a steering committee composed representatives of governments of the NWT and Canada, and all Aboriginal organizations in the NWT. The CIM program will provide a mechanism for the monitoring the cumulative impacts of land and water uses on the environment in the Mackenzie Valley. The Act requires that the environmental audit must be completed and publicly available at least every five years, with the first conducted no later than 2003.

The CIM program was largely on hold due to a funding shortfall. The GTC expressed grave concern over the initial lack of funding and with the amount later provided.The CIM Working Group expanded to include all NWTregional Aboriginal organizations. Each organization determined whether it would assume member or observer status on the Working Group. This group met once in person to review a draft plan for 2000-2001; however, the majority of the proposed work was not conducted, including the finalization of the development of a long-term work plan and the implementation of the 12 tasks identified the draft plan.

The Working Group provisionally identified the priority valued ecosystem components to be monitored and supported an initial review of available information for these components. Limited funding was provided for an information management workshop in conjunction with the CEAMF initiative and for the Community-Land Relationship Project in the GSA. Discussion papers concerning implementation of the CIM program and development of terms of reference for the environmental audit were provided to the Working Group by INAC.

Protected Area Strategy

In September, the NWT PAS Implementation Advisory Committee was established with representatives from each regional Aboriginal organization, including the GTC, industry, environmental non-government organizations and the governments of Canada and NWT. INAC also supported a PAS Secretariat in partnership with RWED


Negotiations continued on draft chapters intended to form parts of a Beaufort-Delta Self-Government AIP.The NWT Region provided research and administrative support to the chief federal negotiator in the negotiations process.

Treaty Payments

The NWT region of INAC met with each of the four Gwich'in bands and made the annual treaty payments: Gwichya Gwich'in in Tsiigehtchic on April 11, 2000; Tetlit Gwich'in in Fort McPherson on April 12, 2000; Aklavik on April 13, 2000 and Inuvik on April 14, 2000.

Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 1: Membership of Implementing Bodies: Membership and Web Site Addresses (as of March 31, 2001)

Membership of Implementing Bodies (as of March 31, 2001)

Arbitration Panel

James Ross
Grace Blake
Freddie Carmichael
Willard Hagen
Richard M. Hill
Katherine Peterson, QC
Peter Ross

Gwich'in Land Use Planning Board

Bob Simpson
Karen LeGresley
Ian McLeod
Hall Mills
Charlie Snowshoe



Gwichin Land and Water Board

Morris Blake
George E. John
Willard Hagen
Norma Kassi
David Krutko



Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board

Robert Charlie
Robert Alexie, Sr.
Joe Benoit
Chief James Firth
Paul Latour
Roger Peete

Robert Elais
Victoria Johnson
John S. Nagy
Melba Mitchell
Robert Moshenko
Norman Snowshoe



Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board

Gordon Lennie
Dan Bayha
Dennis Bevington
Barney Masuzumi
Frank Pope
Bertha Rabesca
Charlie Snowshoe
Gordon Wray



Web Site Addresses

Gwich'in Tribal Council  

Gwich'in Land and Water Board  

Gwich'in Renewable Resources Board  

Gwich'in Land Use Planning Board  

Mackenzie Valley Environmental Impact Review Board  

Implementation Branch, Indian and Northern Affairs Canada

Ministry of Aboriginal Affairs, Government of the Northwest Territories

Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 2: Map of Gwich'in Settlement Area

Map of Gwich'in Settlement Area

For your information, there is a new map of the GSA which can be downloaded at

Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 3: Schedule of Capital Transfer Payments 1992 to 2000

Schedule of Capital Transfer Payments 1992 to 2000

Date Capital Transfers to the GTC*

April 22, 1992 $2,000,000
December 23, 1992 $7,426,766
April 22, 1993 $4,180,680
April 22, 1994 $6,271,020
April 22, 1995 $7,455,068
April 22, 1996 $9,318,835
April 22, 1997 $9,318,835
April 22, 1998 $9,318,835
April 22, 1999 $9,318,835
April 22, 2000 $9,318,835

Total $73,927,709

* Net of negotiation loan repayments. 
Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 4: Implementation Payments to the GTC, the GNWT and Implementing Bodies, 1992-1993 to 2000-2001

Implementation Payments to the GTC, the GNWT
and Implementing Bodies 1992-1993 to

Fiscal Year Implementation Payments

1992-1993 $559,151
1993-1994 $1,070,634
Wildlife Studies Fund $2,030,000
1994-1995 $1,833,735
1995-1996 $1,886,760
1996-1997 $2,987,444
1997-1998 $3,174,342
1998-1999 $3,197,097
1999-2000 $3,310,619
2000-2001 $3,501,345

Total $23,551,127

Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 5: Payments Under Section 9.1.1 with Respect to Resource Royalties Received by Government 1992 to 2000

Payments Under Section 9.1.1 with Respect
Resource Royalties Received by Government,
1992 to 2000

Fiscal Year Payments

1992 $10,122
1993 $212,883
1994 $197,009
1995 $204,345
1996 $242,090
1997 $244,261
1998 $211,264
1999 $321,949
2000 $343,224

Total $1,987,147

Return to Table of Contents

Appendix 6: Gwich'in Property Taxes Paid Out, 1994 to 2000

Gwich'in Property Taxes Paid Out, 1994 to 2000

Fiscal Year Amount

1994 $4,306
1995 $4,348
1996 $4,571
1997 $4,571
1998 $4,752
1999 $4,734
2000 $6,411

Total $33,693

Return to Table of Contents

Did you find what you were looking for?

What was wrong?

You will not receive a reply. Don't include personal information (telephone, email, SIN, financial, medical, or work details).
Maximum 300 characters

Thank you for your feedback

Date modified: