baffindland

  • Live Webcast of NIRB Mary River Hearings

    uploaded by: Cara Di Staulo

    channel: LIVE

    IsumaTV's online radio and TV coverage of the second round of Public Hearings on the Baffinland Iron Mine Mary River Environmental Review from Pond Inlet, Nunavut.

    The Nunavut Impact Review Board (NIRB) is holding new public consultations to assess Baffinland’s revised Early Revenue Phase Proposal.

    January 27 to 31, 2014

    Starting 9 am EST, IsumaTV will stream live Inuktitut and English audio each day from the hearings.

    Every evening from 8 to 10 pm EST, Zacharias Kunuk will host a live TV talk show to discuss issues raised at the hearings with community members and participants in the hearings.

    INUKTITUT AUDIO FROM THE HEARINGS: www.isuma.tv/DID/radio/igloolik

    ENGLISH AUDIO: www.isuma.tv/DID/Live/NIRBMaryRiverHearings/English

    LIVE SHOW: www.isuma.tv/en/DID/Live/NIRBMaryRiverHearings

    Both the live audio from the hearings and Kunuk’s evening show will also be broadcast by IsumaTV through local community radio channels and IsumaTV television network in Arviat, Cambridge Bay, Igloolik and Taloyoak.

    ----

    For more information contact:
    Zacharias Kunuk, 867-934-8725, zkunuk@isuma.ca
    Norman Cohn, 514-576-0707, cohn@isuma.ca

    Uqalimakkanirit

    uploaded date: 20-01-2014

  • DID in the News!

    uploaded by: Cara Di Staulo

    channel: DID News

    Zacharias Kunuk Creates Cultural Internet for the Inuits of Canada

    By Bernadine Racoma 

    The Inuit hamlet of Igloolik, the place where celebrated film producer and director Zacharias Kunuk, himself a member of the Inuit tribe, received his education, became the first site for an innovative high-technology cultural Internet broadcasting project two years ago. The Globe and Mail reported on January 22 that the project, called the Digital Indigenous Democracy (DID) will help give birth to a new breed of grassroots filmmaking. It is centered in 10 communities of the Nunavut and is expected to make a big impact, i.e.,

    “It could have a big impact on the use of indigenous languages in digital media and on how isolated Northerners understand — and perhaps alter — the futures being dreamt for them in office towers in Calgary and Toronto.“

    Zacharias Kunuk

    Fifty-six year old Zacharias Kunuk is a Canadian Inuk director and producer. The multi-awarded director is widely known for “Atanarjuat,” the first dramatic feature film in Canada that was filmed entirely in the Inuktitut language. Inuktitut is also called Eastern Canadian Inuit or Eastern Canadian Inuktitut, one of Canada’s principal Inuit languages.

    Kunuk is the co-founder and president of the Igloolik Isuma Productions, an independent Inuit production company, which is the first in Canada. His partners include Norman Cohn, Paul Apak Angirlirq and Paul Qulitalik.

    Climate change project

    He was the grand winner in nine film festivals around the world, including Cannes. He became an Officer of the Order of Canada in 2002. With Ian Mauro of the School of Environmental Studies of the University of Victoria, he co-founded the Inuit Knowledge and Climate Change Project. The project aims to collect information on the impact of climate change on the Inuit environment and culture from the Inuit elders’ perspective. The project will be turned into a film later and they have already submitted a project video to the United Nations in 2009.

    Big plans for the Inuit community

    While his cultural Internet project was started two years ago, Kunuk is more inspired than ever because of the technological advances in communication. The changes that have happened in the past two years provided Kunuk with the experience and the means to protect and possibly strengthen the language and lifestyle of his people. He and his partners want to save languages that have survived for 4,000 years.

    Kunuk wanted to build an Internet that is capable of working audio-visually so that his people will be able to use the Inuit language. Their project was started with an initial $1 million grant from the experimental stream of Canada Media Fund. They were hampered by the low-bandwidth at that time, forcing the Northerners to use text in English to communicate. They are in the process of installing cheap DID media player to stream programs locally from the Isuma catalog. The locals in the 10 communities are learning to create films and some are already into it, putting their work in their own local playlists. Isuma plans to put up a TV station as well.

    The Digital Indigenous Democracy got its start after Zacharias Kunuk intervened formally during the proposed Baffinland iron mine hearings in 2012. He presented Isuma video interviews and call-in radio shows, arguing that the multimedia conversations clearly indicated the obligation to consult and inform the indigenous people. Isuma later broadcast the Baffinland mine hearings in Pond Inlet and Igloolik live, which prompted the inclusion of multimedia consultations with the indigenous community throughout the mining project.

    www.daynews.com

    Uqalimakkanirit

    uploaded date: 23-01-2014

  • DID in the News!

    uploaded by: Cara Di Staulo

    channel: DID News

    Isuma TV set to broadcast Mary River hearings

    Nunavut Impact Review Board hearings scheduled for Jan. 27 to Jan. 31 in Pond Inlet

    BY PETER VARGA

    Isuma TV will do live coverage of the Nunavut Impact Review Board’s public hearings on Baffinland Iron Mine Corp.’s scaled-back Mary River project, set to take place Jan. 27 to Jan. 31 in Pond Inlet.

    NIRB’s hearings will assess the potential impacts of Baffinland’s revised plan to extract and ship iron ore out of a mine some 160 kilometres south of Pond Inlet.

    Plans drafted in 2012 called for the ore to be transported south by rail to Steensby Port, and out of Steensby Inlet south of the mine.

    After public hearings by the NIRB, the Baffinland received a project certificate for the first version of their proposal.

    The corporation changed those plans at the start of 2013.

    To cut costs and earn sales revenue more quickly, Baffinland proposed instead to transport the material north of the mine and out of Milne Inlet, at the north end of Baffin Island. This plan calls for ore to be shipped out of a facility called Milne Port, near Pond Inlet.

    As it did in 2012, IsumaTV will broadcast NIRB’s next hearings via online radio and video through its Digital Indigenous Democracy site.

    “These hearings are likely to be more contentious than the first round in 2012,” IsumaTV stated in a news release announcing its broadcast plan, Jan. 20. “Both the Hamlet of Pond Inlet and the community’s Hunters and Trappers Organization as well as two individuals from the community, have filed formal interventions.”

    The online broadcaster announced it will stream each day of the NIRB hearings live in Inuktitut and English, starting Jan. 27 at 9:00 a.m. Eastern Standard Time, through Igloolik’s online radio hub.

    Also, Zacharias Kunuk of IsumaTV will host a live bilingual TV talk show every evening after each day’s hearing “to address issues raised at the hearings with community members and participants,” the broadcaster said in the release.

    Live video coverage and additional footage will also be available on the site.

    IsumaTV’s live audio coverage and Kunuk’s daily webcast “will also be broadcast through local community radio channels and IsumaTV’s television network in Arviat, Cambridge Bay, Igloolik, Taloyoak, and Pond Inlet,” the broadcaster said.

    NIRB’s hearings take place at Pond Inlet’s Community Hall every day, Jan. 27 to 31, 9:00 a.m. to 5:00 p.m.

    The Nunavut Planning Commission has already held public hearings on the project in five communities, Jan. 7 to 10, to verify that the revised transport route for the ore complies with the North Baffin regional land use plan

    www.nunatsiaqnews.com

    Uqalimakkanirit

    uploaded date: 22-01-2014

  • Public hearings start again this week for scaled down Mary River proposal

    uploaded by: Cara Di Staulo

    channel: DID News

    Nunavut Planning Commission looking at Baffinland's new transportation corridor

    By Lisa Gregoire

     

    The Nunavut Planning Commission will hold public hearings this week in Clyde River, Grise Fiord, Resolute, Arctic Bay and Pond Inlet to allow members of the public to share their views and concerns about Baffinland Iron Mine Corp.’s scaled-down iron mine proposal in north Baffin.

     

    “Feedback received during the Public Review will be used to assist the NPC to determine whether the [early revenue phase of Mary River] meets the information requirements of Appendices J and K of the North Baffin Regional Land Use Plan, and whether to recommend an amendment to the land use plan,” the NPC said on its website.

     

    After years of hearings, technical meetings, public input and thousands of pages of material describing the scope of the Mary River iron mine south of Pond Inlet and its potential impacts on the land, water, animals and people, the proponent, Baffinland, finally got a project certificate to go ahead with the mine in December 2012.

     

    Weeks later, Baffinland announced that because of slumping steel prices, they would be scaling back their proposal to a phased-in approach that would involve temporarily postponing construction of the railway to Steensby Inlet and the year-round port there.

     

    Instead, they would ship only 3.5 million tonnes of ore a year out of Milne Inlet, as opposed to 18 million tonnes, and only between July and October.

     

    This is referred to as Baffinland’s Early Revenue Phase (ERP) and includes, according to NPC documents, “upgrades to the Milne Inlet Tote Road, new permanent project facilities at Milne Inlet and increased truck traffic and shipping traffic transporting iron ore from Mary River Mine Site to markets overseas.”

     

    The potential for greater, or at least different, impacts in those areas, prompted a new round of public consultations. For the NPC’s part, it must examine whether the revised transportation corridor complies with the North Baffin Regional Land Use Plan. After that, the NIRB must consider, again, the wider potential impacts on the marine, land and social environment.

     

    The land use hearings this week were supposed to be handled jointly by the NPC and the Nunavut Impact Review Board but instead, these hearings will be chaired by the NPC alone.

     

    In a series of letters between the NIRB and the NPC in late November 2013, the NIRB expressed its intention to pull out of the hearings because the board felt it had not been properly consulted on the format, procedures and rules of the hearings.

     

    For one, the NIRB preferred “information sessions” rather than full blown hearings, and the board also felt there had not been enough public notice of the hearings given to “community organizations in the North Baffin, to the Government of Nunavut, or to the general public.”

     

    While acknowledging these omissions, “may have been the result of inadvertence, it does not change the fact that this complete lack of communication has significantly limited the Board’s ability to participate in a meaningful way in the collaborative conduct of the joint review,” wrote Ryan Barry, the NIRB’s executive director, in a Nov. 22 letter to the NPC.

    Despite these “regrettable developments,” the NIRB remains committed to a joint review of the transportation corridor application associated with Baffinland’s ERP proposal, the letter concludes, and it will continue soliciting public input and sharing information with the NPC.

     

    When contacted by Nunatsiaq News, Barry downplayed the dispute.

     

    “The NPC and NIRB have different rules of procedure which they must follow when fulfilling their respective responsibilities and this led to the NIRB being unable to participate directly in the NPC’s scheduled hearings,” Barry wrote in an email.

     

    “However in no way do we feel this would hamper the NPC’s success in facilitating these sessions or the timeliness of either the NPC-NIRB joint review of the transportation corridor application or the NIRB assessment of the full early revenue phase proposal.”

     

    In an email to Nunatsiaq News Jan. 7, Sharon Ehaloak, executive director of the NPC, said the NIRB’s absence from the hearings this week will have no bearing on the quality or outcome of the consultation.

     

    “Furthermore,” she wrote, “the NIRB remains a partner to the wider [North Baffin Regional Land Use Plan] public review; they don’t need to be at the hearing for the NPC to access the information the NIRB has gathered in its review process.”

     

    However, she is more pointed in a Nov. 24 letter to Barry. In that letter, Ehaloak defends the NPC’s actions saying it was the commission’s job to take the lead in the process and so it applied its own criteria as a result.

     

    She told Barry public hearings are necessary because the “information sessions” that the NIRB had previously conducted for the railway, “merely informed the public that the NPC and the NIRB were reviewing the amendment application,” and thus didn’t allow Inuit and other members of the public to “meaningfully participate” in the process.

     

    “The NPC is of the view that greater public involvement in the review of the ERP is necessary to satisfy the NPC’s express and implied obligations in the Nunavut Land Claims Agreement to act in the public interest,” Ehaloak wrote in the letter.

     

    The low-level tiff between the two organizations highlights the continuing convoluted nature of development in Nunavut which requires complex approvals from a variety of boards that have specific jurisdictional responsibilities under the land claim.

     

    For years, the Nunavut Government, Nunavut Tunngavik Inc. and the Government of Canada have tried to streamline the process.

     

    In June 2013, the federal Northern Jobs and Growth Act received royal assent and included within it, the Nunavut Planning and Project Assessment Act, which is meant to make the review process “more efficient and predictable.”

    The problem is, the NIRB and NPC say they don’t have enough money and capacity to achieve the federal government’s goals.

     

    In January 2013, NIRB and NPC representatives told a House of Commons committee that they were already stretched to the breaking point with current responsibilities to take on new tasks involving, among other things, translation and access to information obligations.

     

    Those wishing to attend the public hearings this week in north Baffin can find a schedule of times and places here.

    While the NPC encouraged participants to give prior notice if they wanted to speak and submit their written comments in advance, time has been set aside on each day’s agenda for oral comments from the public. The NPC’s rules of procedure for the hearings can be found here.

     

    www.nunatsiaqonline.ca

     

    Uqalimakkanirit

    uploaded date: 07-01-2014

  • New Baffinland plan submitted

    uploaded by: Cara Di Staulo

    channel: Isuma News

    Review process begins again for Mary River Project

    Lyndsay Herman
    Northern News Services
    Published Monday, July 1, 2013

    MITTIMATALIK/POND INLET
    The Mary River Project is rolling again now that the project's operators have submitted an updated plan for the mine.

    Uqalimakkanirit

    uploaded date: 09-07-2013