Willi Nolan Statements to the NB Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing 15 Oct 2015

Willi Nolan Statements to the New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing October 15 2015

 

Peoples Lawsuit Plaintiffs speak before NB Commission Hydrofracturing 15 Oct 2015

Peoples Lawsuit Plaintiffs speak before NB Commission Hydrofracturing 15 Oct 2015

My name is Little Fire Always Burning; you know me as the name on my birth certificate, or as Willi Nolan.

Today, the Commission has respectfully listened to many of our Peoples Lawsuit Plaintiffs – youth, Grandmothers, Grandfathers, and even to statements from the lawful authorities that they stand under and represent. I am glad and proud to have initiated the anti-fracking lawsuits that the New Brunswick government is facing.

I stand here today as a Grandmother and concerned citizen, and I carry with me ancestral teachings and walk gladly as a traditional Indigenous Grandmother under the pre-colonial Wabanaki Confederacy governance structure. Wabanaki governance has been existent prior to the colonial governments known as Canada and New Brunswick.

Willi_Speaking Hwy 11 Rexton Oct2013.jpg

Willi Nolan Speaking at Treaty Day Rexton NB Oct 2013

My life’s work is to address risks to, to protect and to heal human and ecosystem health. I embrace citizen action, ancestral teachings and popular education as key tools for opening minds and hearts to the changes that humanity must embrace in order to survive.

It is a fact that burning the fossil fuels that have already been recovered by industry would push accelerating Climate Change past the point of no return. What we are facing, in plain words, is human extinction. We have a grave, serious and immediate responsibility to act on behalf of our young people and their great grandchildren. We are not only responsible, but obligated to consider their best interests in our decision making.

Technologies such as hydraulic fracturing for oil & gas have created an ugly place in our collective history. It is all too well known that the risks far outweigh the benefits. The New Brunswick Commission on Hydraulic Fracturing must call for an immediate phase out of technologies that are known to fail and to poison our water, land and the Life forms that are completely dependent on them.

As a grandmother of Indigenous cultures who walks with pride in my sacred ancestral teachings, I am responsible to care for the waters, to respect our Earth Mother, and to respect the law of the land and the inherent rights of the peoples of Wabanaki under Creator’s original direction and ancient treaties. As a traditional Grandmother, it is my responsibility to walk and act as an extension of the Earth Mother. I know that corporations and governments are legally bound to honour treaties and international laws that affirm the rights of Indigenous peoples to free, prior and informed consent before infringing upon unceded territories.

I beg the Commission to help us all to learn to live in Peace and Friendship. Help us to free the coming generations from the burden of cleaning up contamination from hydrofracturing for oil and gas by condemning these developments. I ask the Commission to recommend that we get to work instead on decommissioning all hydrofracturing operations in the province, and on remediating the damaged lands and waters.

For our survival and well being. we must rise and turn in a new direction, make use of available, abundant, clean, profitable and sustainable energy technologies. We must refuse to allow any more harm. We must preserve and care for the gifts of the Earth and prevent greed from causing the extinction of Life forms and placing the lands and waters of Wabanakik and the entire human race at grave risk of irreparable harm.

I ask that the Commission not only meet its mandate to the province, but to also act as citizens, parents, grandparents and members of our communities, and call for an end to hydrofracturing in New Brunswick. By recommending a permanent moratorium on these operations, the Commission can open the necessary dialogue for beginning careful monitoring, and, where needed, thoughtful remediation of the ecosystems that have already been harmed in New Brunswick at sites such as those in the Sussex-Penobsquis area. That particular area is at even greater risk than similar sites in other places in the world because of its proximity to an unstable fault line leading to the Point Lepreau Nuclear Power Generating Plant, which is known to be prone to earthquakes, and which has historically suffered tsunami-like disaster similar to that which occurred at Fukushima, Japan in 2011.

I further request that the Commission charge the governments of Canada and New Brunswick to gather grace and humbleness, respond appropriately to our lawsuits, and thank the brave Plaintiffs for their care, diligence and unwavering concern for all peoples. Our science is sound, our rights are inherent and our intentions are the highest: for the good of All Our Relations. Will the Commission recommend that the province drop its complicity in a lawsuit against every Jane Doe and John Doe in New Brunswick, compensate us for the loss of our time, energy, suffering and expense? Collectively, we, as citizens have brought volumes of scientific evidence, and have denied social license to governments and corporations that once sought to ignore our truths. I know that I am not alone in saying that I did not want to have to sue the government in order to stop these dangerous practices.

It is my hope and prayer that our political leaders will one day set aside the status quo, and will work and walk with us into a new energy future, a future that we can be pleased to leave as a legacy for our children’s children’s children. It is my prayer that the Commission will carry the rights, concerns and will of citizens with them to decision-makers, and will help us to remove the threat of hydraulic fracturing for fossil fuels from our lives forever.

Thank you for your kind attention.
Msit No’kmaq

All My Relations

Little Fire Always Burning aka. Willi Nolan, Grandmother