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Live Webcast of NIRB Mary River Hearings

IsumaTV will provide live online radio 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.

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

English audio will also be available here.

Also 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.

DID in the 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

DID in the 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

Final hearing on Meliadine mine will be in Rankin Inlet

The final hearing on the proposed Meliadine gold mine will be held in Rankin Inlet, likely in August.

The Nunavut Impact Review Board decided Rankin Inlet was the best location since the site is only about 24 kilometres from the community.

Agnico-Eagle is proposing to mine five gold deposits there, year-round. It's expected to produce about 3 million tonnes of ore each year for 13 years.

If approved, Meliadine would be Agnico-Eagle's second gold mine in Nunavut. The Meadowbank mine near Baker Lake opened four years ago and is now Agnico-Eagle's largest gold producer.

Before the final hearing, NIRB wants more information from the company on things such as dust mitigation, the impact of marine traffic, and where the workforce will come from.

Agnico-Eagle said its final Environment Impact Statement will be ready by mid-April.

Then NIRB will set the date for the final hearing.

www.cbc.ca

21 years of Televisón Serrana

On January 15th, Television Serrana (“Television of the mountains”) celebrated its 21st year of operation, from the highest mountain system in Cuba. Founded in 1993 by journalist and documentary filmmaker Daniel Ten Castrillo, and supported by the Cuban Institute of Radio and Television (ICRT), this community project seeks to reflect and defend the identity, human values and culture of the inhabitants of the Sierra Maestra mountain range. 

As a not-for-profit organization that seeks to promote the knowledge and use of audiovisual media for social, educational and cultural advancement, Television Serrana joined the Latin American Coordination of Film and Communication Indigenous Peoples (CLACPI) in late 90s, thanks to a partnership with the Center for Training and Filmmaking of Bolivia, CEFREC.

Commitment to the people of Sierra Maestra and their distinct identity, experiences, needs, customs, philosophy and worldview, as well as the ambition to produce solid and aesthetic documentaries that reveal a collective imagery, have always been the fundamental pillars of Television Serrana, as part of their aim to create a community initiative promoting popular participation in media and allowing the Serrano people to not only be spectators but complicit participants in the medium.

In a recent interview, Daniel Ten summed up the organization’s work: "Perhaps the one who helped us the most to understand how to make Serrana TV was Martí […] Martí talks about the need to bring passion and advocates for education into the mountains and remote areas to work at enabling the link between education and culture." 

This work is perfectly in synch with the aspirations of the indigenous producers at CLACPI, who join in celebrating a new year for Television Serrana.

By Gabriela Gamez

www.claclpi.org