Opitciwan and the Plan Nord: Forestry, Protests, and Declarations of Sovereignty

By Sarah Amira Aldridge

The Atikamekw Nation includes Manawan, Wemotaci, and Opitciwan. The three communities are located around the Upper Sainte-Maurice River and in the Valley of Quebec. Within the context of the Plan Nord, Opitciwan is the only Atikamekw Community that is above the infamous 49th parallel. The economic interest the Plan Nord has in seizing this resourceful geographical area is the forestry industry. Sawmills in and around Opitciwan have been in development since the 1800’s and by the early 1900’s it had been established as a paper and pulp mill community. Read More

Government Action Plans

The Project of a Generation: Plan Nord 2011

by Amanda Claudia Bos & Lotte Frencken

The Plan Nord is a development strategy launched by the Government of Québec in 2011, which covers the territory north of the 49th parallel, equivalent to 72% of Québec’s area. It aims to create economic returns and increase the labour market for a population of over 120 000 people, including 40 000 Aboriginals, while respecting the communities residing this territory. Plan Nord’s purpose has been to open up “new horizons to future generations of Quebecers and [to] offer the world the example of modern, sustainable, harmonious development.” (Plan Nord 2011, 7) Read More

Forestry and the Baril-Moses Agreement

By Charlène Tshibola, Danie Lavoie, Kaiza Graham, Raphaëlle Bigras-Burrogano

baril moses2Forestry in Cree territory got to a point where massive areas where being clear-cut, leading to the displacement of wildlife and a disruption of hunting. In response, the Cree nation of Eeyou Istchee sought to come to an agreement with Quebec where the forestry industry could still exist without interfering with the Cree’s hunting, fishing and trapping practices. Read More

The Forestry Toolbox Strategy

By Ramnik Riar

The forestry industry is one of Canada’s top primary resource sectors. Members of the First Nations in Quebec formed the First Nations of Quebec and Labrador Sustainable Development Institute (FNQLSDI) and have developed the forestry toolbox in order to advocate sustainable forestry management. The forestry toolbox is a tool used by First Nations which is aimed at sustainable resource management of ancestral lands. Read More

The Baril Moses Agreement

By Kayza Graham

In 2002, the Baril-Moses Agreement was signed between the Quebec government and the Grand Council of Crees (GCC, 2015). The Baril-Moses Agreement was signed in response to concerns about forestry practices where the Cree have 14 traplines. A separate agreement was signed around the same time concerning forestry practices within the territory of the James Bay Northern Quebec Agreement, called the Paix des Braves Agreement. Read More