This website will change as a result of the dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. Consult the new Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada home page or the new Indigenous Services Canada home page.
This website will change as a result of the dissolution of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada. Consult the new Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada home page or the new Indigenous Services Canada home page.
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The Implementation Committee for the Nunavik Inuit Land Claims Agreement (NILCA) is pleased to present its first implementation report covering the period from July 10, 2008 to March 31, 2011.
The Implementation Committee is also very pleased to report that since the coming into force of the NILCA, all of the main elements of this Agreement have been successfully implemented:
The success to date for the implementation of the NILCA can be largely attributed to federal improvements over the past 35 years regarding certain aspects of the treaty negotiation process such as the requirement for an implementation plan and provision for the establishment of an implementation committee.
The implementation plan is a very important aspect of any implementation process because it sets out the obligations and responsibilities of each party to a treaty and the time frames for the execution of these obligations and responsibilities regarding the funding of all costs and expenses that goes along with implementing a treaty. The plan also sets forth funding levels and responsibilities for the implementation of a treaty. The implementation plan for the NILCA, which was jointly prepared by representatives of Canada and Makivik Corporation, is not a land claims agreement or a treaty within the meaning of section 35 of the Constitution Act of 1982, but does constitute a legally binding contract between the parties unless otherwise specified. The initial period of the implementation plan started on the effective date of the NILCA and will end on the tenth anniversary of the effective date of the NILCA. Annex B of the implementation plan identifies the payment of funds and any annual adjustments during the initial implementation period.
The establishment of an implementation committee is also an essential aspect of any effective implementation process because it provides support to stakeholders by reviewing, monitoring and providing guidance and direction to the implementation of a treaty. As noted above, the Implementation Committee for the NILCA was successfully established and provided operational guidance during this period to the various parties involved with the implementation of this treaty.
Finally, as a result of these new prerequisites, the implementation process of the NILCA has proven to be substantially more effective than that of the James Bay and Northern Quebec Agreement, signed by Nunavik Inuit in 1975. The latter agreement did not contain any specific process or significant details for implementation, which led to many difficulties on its implementation over the last several decades.
On December 1, 2006 in Kuujjuaq, Nunavik, then President of Makivik Corporation, Pita Aatami, then Premier of Nunavut, Paul Okalik, and then Minister of Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development, Jim Prentice signed the Nunavik Inuit Land Claims Agreement (NILCA). Prior to this signature, this Agreement was approved by a large majority (78%) of eligible Nunavik Inuit voters during a ratification vote held during the month of October 2006 in the fifteen Nunavik communities. The Agreement came into force on July 10, 2008 following the adoption by Parliament of Canada of the Nunavik Inuit Land Claims Agreement Act (S.C. 2008, c.2). This Agreement is a treaty and is constitutionally protected within the meaning of section 35 of the Constitution Act of 1982.
The NILCA addresses the use and ownership of lands and resources in James Bay, Hudson Bay, Hudson Strait and Ungava Bay (known as the Nunavik Marine Region) (see Appendix 1) as well as a portion of northern Labrador and an area offshore to Labrador (see Appendix 2).
Pursuant to the NILCA, Nunavik Inuit own, either solely or jointly, a total of 7 530 islands which constitute an approximate area of 8 051km²Footnote 1.
Finally, the NILCA contains separate overlap agreements between Nunavik Inuit and the Nunavut Inuit, the Crees of Eeyou Istchee, and the Labarador Inuit.
Provisions regarding capital transfer, implementation funding, enrollment list, funding agreements with Government of Nunavut and funding for NILCA's Institutions of Public Government have been included in the Agreement and its implementation plan. These provisions comprised an estimated amount of 131 Million DollarsFootnote 2 to be transferred over the initial ten-year period which follows the enactment of this Agreement. Since the enactment of the NILCA, payments have been successfully made according to final schedules.
As set out in the Agreement, the funding related to the implementation of the NILCA is solely assumed by the Government of Canada. In 2008-2011, Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) paid a total of $61,267,441Footnote 3 to fulfill its obligations as set out in the NILCA.
An interim secretariat was provided by Makivik Corporation during the period between the coming into force of the Agreement and the time when the three NILCA Institutions of Public Government, namely the Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board (NMRWB), the Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB) and the Nunavik Marine Region Planning Commission (NMRPC), became operationally effective. Interim Secretariat services included providing assistance to the Institutions of Public Government meetings, adopting of by-laws, leasing of office space, arranging for housing to be available in Inukjuak (NMRWB) and Kuujjuaq (NMRPC and NMRIRB) for staff and in relation to the recruitment and relocation of their permanent staff. To carry out these responsibilities, AANDC granted a discretionary amount of $97,006 to Makivik Corporation in 2008-2009.
Pursuant to its obligations under subsection 23.4.1. of the NILCA, AANDC has granted $4,262,829Footnote 4 to the Nunavik Inuit Trust (NIT)Footnote 5 and $26,842,813Footnote 6Footnote 7 to Makivik Corporation for the period of 2008 to 2011. As specified in subsection 23.4.4. of the NILCA, these funds were used by Makivik Corporation to implement this Agreement and to carry out the objects of Makivik Corporation as set out in the Act respecting the Makivik Corporation, R.S.Q., chapter S-18.1.
With the coming into force of the NILCA, the Torngat Mountains National Park Reserve received national park status, officially making it Canada's 42nd national park. The park comprises 9,700 km², extending from Saglek Fjord in the south to the northern tip of Labrador, and from the provincial boundary of Quebec in the west to the Labrador Sea in the east. The Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada protects an area of spectacular Arctic wilderness, home to a variety of wildlife and numerous archaeological sites.
Pursuant to its funding obligation, AANDC paid $1,072,464Footnote 8 in 2008-2009 to Makivik Corporation in relation with the Park Impacts and Benefits Agreement for the Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada.
As per Article 4 of the NILCA, any person who is enrolled as a beneficiary of the James Bay and Northern Québec Agreement, as amended from time to time, is eligible to be enrolled as a beneficiary under the NILCA. In order to be entitled to benefit from this Agreement, a person must be enrolled on the NILCA Enrolment List. To establish this list, AANDC paid $46,785 to Makivik Corporation in 2008-2009.
The NILCA provides for the establishment of an implementation committee responsible for overseeing, monitoring and reporting on the implementation of the Agreement, and making recommendations to the parties for future planning periods following the initial ten-year period. The Implementation Committee of the NILCA is composed of three senior officials, one from Canada, one from Nunavut, and one from Makivik Corporation.
To fulfill the Crown obligations regarding the NILCA, federal departments contributed to the successful implementation of the Agreement through the activities below.
Apart from funding, the Government of Canada participates actively in the implementation of the NILCA through an interdepartmental caucus. This Interdepartmental Caucus provides a structured forum to help ensure collaborative, consistent and effective fulfillment of implementation activities undertaken in the different federal organizations. Generally, the Interdepartmental Caucus meets twice a year and these regular meetings often coincide with upcoming Implementation Committee meetings. These meetings allow members of federal departments with implementation responsibilities to discuss implementation-related matters, to propose that certain issues be referred to the Implementation Committee for further discussions and finally, to consult with Canada's representative on the Implementation Committee about committee business before Implementation Committee meetings. The main federal organizations that sit at the Interdepartmental Caucus are Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada, Environment Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada, Natural Resources Canada and Parks Canada.
Aboriginal Affairs and Northern Development Canada (AANDC) is the department responsible for overseeing the implementation of the NILCA and making all funding transfers related to the implementation of the said Agreement.
In 2008-2011, AANDC undertook several activities in regards to the implementation of the NILCA. These activities included the participation of AANDC in the NILCA Implementation Committee in order to ensure proper and timely implementation of the NILCA and the department involvement in the setting-up of the three Institutions of Public Government along with the establishment of funding agreements for these Institutions of Public Government. In this sense, AANDC provided assistance in resolving funding and related matters for these Institutions of Public Government and undertook information sessions for Nunavik regional organizations and institutions in regard to the NILCA. Lastly, the department participated jointly with Makivik Corporation in the implementation of the overlapping arrangements contained in Articles 27, 28 and 29 of the NILCA.
During the same period, AANDC was also responsible for monitoring members' appointments to these three Institutions of Public Government as well as members' appointments for the Implementation Committee. These appointments needed to be approved by the Minister as well as the Governor in Council.
Shortly before the coming into force of the Agreement, AANDC was also responsible for the transfer of lands. Surveys were completed in early 2008 and lands were successfully transferred in the subsequent years.
Finally, to maximize opportunities for Inuit and Northern firms in Nunavik, the Contaminated Sites Program of AANDC undertook project specific activities in the territory. In 2008, an environmental site assessment program was executed on Nottingham Island. In 2010, following detailed studies of the Bear Island site, which includes environmental, archaeological and geotechnical site assessments, the $8.9 million remediation contract was awarded to Biogénie, a Division of Englobe. The majority of the project was completed in the fall of 2010. Throughout this project, Biogénie reached a 67% Nunavik Inuit / Eeyou Istchee Cree employment rate, and a 93% Nunavik Inuit / Eeyou Istchee Cree-owned business-subcontracting rate. Community consultations for this project took place in Chisasibi, Wemindji and Waskaganish, Quebec in September 2009 and June 2010. A completion presentation of these completed projects was presented to these communities in November 2010.
In 2008-2011, Environment Canada (EC) participated closely with NILCA's Institutions of Public Government in the implementation of wildlife management plans and with regard to conducting impact reviews of proposed development projects in the Nunavik Marine Region as specified under the Agreement. The Canadian Wildlife Service of EC has cooperated actively in the work of the Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board (NMRWB) by making EC's expertise available to the NMRWB and by providing technical support. In 2009-2011, EC has also funded a research project proposed by Makivik Corporation entitled "Environmental Issues and Wildlife Resource Management in Nunavik"; the main objective of which is to facilitate the implementation of NILCA's wildlife resources management system and to promote effective interactions with existing systems. EC was one of the first government departments to be called to work with the Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB) as part of the implementation of the environmental assessment regime established by the NILCA. As such, the department has assumed a leadership role within the federal family in conjunction with the NMRIRB in establishing a collaborative framework to promote effective interaction when the environmental assessment process of the NILCA is triggered.
Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) has the lead federal role in managing Canada's fisheries through healthy and productive aquatic ecosystems as well as safeguarding its waters. DFO participated actively in the implementation of the NILCA in the Nunavik Marine Region with the Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board (NMRWB) through the collaborative management of marine resources. Departmental staff were present during the NMRWB's quarterly meetings and conference calls and provided expertise with regard to relevant files, such as beluga and bowhead whales' management.
In 2008-2011, DFO worked in collaboration with NMRWB and Makivik Corporation to complete marine mammal abundance surveys, collected biological samples from the Inuit harvest of beluga, ringed seals and bowhead whales. DFO also supported traditional and ecological knowledge research into the ecology of beluga, bowhead whales and walrus and provided science support to the NMRWB on marine mammal issues. Moreover, in collaboration with the NMRWB, a three-year Beluga Management Plan for the Nunavik Marine Region was developed, and licences were issued in 2008 and again in 2009, for the harvest of bowhead whales. Monitoring of the harvesting activities was conducted by dedicated Fishery Officers for Northern Quebec in conjunction with the Local Nunavimmi Umajulivijiit Katujiqatigininga (LNUKs) and the Regional Nunavimmi Umajulivijiit Katujiqatigininga (RNUK). Furthermore, DFO worked with the Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB) on the evaluation of proposed projects. Finally, consultations were conducted in collaboration with organisations such as the Nunavik Research Centre, Makivik Corporation, the NMRWB, the RNUK and LNUKs.
Following approval by the Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB), the Surveyor General Branch of Natural Resources Canada undertook surveys of parts of Akpatok and Digges Islands as part as the implementation process of the NILCA. The surveys were completed in late 2011.
Parks Canada (PC) seeks the advice of the independent seven member Cooperative Management Board (CMB) established through the Nunavik Inuit Parks Impacts and Benefits Agreement for the Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada and the Labrador Inuit Park Impacts and Benefits Agreement for the Torngat Mounains National Park Reserve in all matters associated with the establishment, operation and management of the Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada. PC has appointed a Nunavik Inuit beneficiary from Kangiqsualujjuaq as one of the two PC appointees to the CMB. The CMB holds one meeting a year in Kangiqsualujjuaq and one in the park, in addition to meetings convened by teleconference.
The first management plan for the Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada was completed in June 2010 and tabled in Parliament. The management plan, which is a requirement under the Canada National Parks Act (2000), provides a strategic framework within which PC and the Inuit of Nunatsiavut and of Nunavik will make subsequent management planning and implementation decisions together over the next five years
Finally, PC has established an administrative office in Kangiqsualujjuaq. The office space is located in the new pavilion for the Parc National Kuururjuaq under a lease arrangement with the Kativik Regional Government. It supports two seasonal employees who are Nunavik Inuit beneficiaries from Kangiqsualujjuaq.
The Government of Nunavut (GN) has several implementation obligations under the NILCA, many of which are on an as-needed basis, i.e. activities associated with nominating members to NILCA's Institutions of Public Government, new consultation requirements, potential travel and translation costs related to obligations. Costs related to implementation management include ongoing membership on the Implementation Committee and related activities. Legal obligations include land titles registration, surveys and the potential for dispute resolution costs. Environmental obligations include licensing, harvesting related information collection, enforcement of wildlife legislation, general environmental monitoring and land use planning where it overlaps and affects both jurisdictions, enforcement of development project certificates, related activities and activities associated with the future Marine Council. Finally, there are other obligations related to places names, archaeological and ethnographic resources and legislation, and resource royalty related activities (calculations, proposals, legislation, etc.).
In 2008-2011 period, Executive and Intergovernmental Affairs provided support to all GN departments in implementing elements of the NILCA, such as specific obligations under Article 2 (General Provisions), Articles 6 and 7 (Land and Resource Management) and Article 23 (Implementation). Implementation activities between 2008 and 2011 included:
Article 11 of the NILCA assigns the Department of Environment responsibility for the implementation of impact and benefit agreements (IBAs) for all territorial parks, and for negotiating and implementing IBAs for conservation areas either under shared jurisdiction or solely under the jurisdiction of the territorial government. No protected areas are currently planned for the Nunavik Inuit Settlement Area. In 2008-2011, Department of Environment worked with Parks Canada Agency, Canadian Wildlife Service and other federal and territorial partners to promote Parks and Conservation Areas throughout Nunavut, including the Nunavik Inuit Settlement Area.
With the jurisdictional responsibility to protect the land and people of the territory, the GN has a very real and tangible interest in the outcome of the land use planning (Article 6) and the development impact process (Article 7). Implementation activities undertaken by the Environmental Protection Division included:
Under the NILCA, the responsibility for conservation of terrestrial species is divided between the Department of Environment, the Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board and the RNUK and the LNUKs. These organizations work collectively and independently on their respective priorities as outlined in the NILCA. In the GN, responsibility for wildlife management initiatives falls under the Wildlife Management Division of the Department of Environment and it is responsible for licensing, information collection, enforcement of wildlife legislation and wildlife monitoring.
In 2008-2011, the Department of Environment participated in the decision process by bringing the department's management recommendations forward to the Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board. The Wildlife Management Division also worked to ensure Nunavik Inuit were involved in all aspects of wildlife management in the Nunavik Inuit Settlement Area.
In 2008-2011, the Department of Justice, namely the Legal and Constitutional Law Division, the Legislative Division and the Land Titles Office, provided to all GN departments the legal services required to undertake the operations and processes mandated by the NILCA:
In 2008-2011, the Department of Culture and Heritage worked with Nunavik Inuit to implement Articles 20 and 21 of the NILCA, including permitting, drafting and passing a new place names policy as per part 21.4. of the NILCA. The Department of Culture and Heritage also worked with Nunavik Inuit to coordinate deposition of archaeological and ethnographic specimens.
In 2008-2011, AANDC granted a total of $1,142,319 Footnote 9 to the GN for its participation in NILCA's implementing activities.
In 2008-2011, Makivik Corporation undertook several activities regarding the implementation of the NILCA. Among these activities are the participation of Makivik Corporation in the Implementation Committee for the NILCA in order to ensure proper and timely implementation of the NILCA and in the Torngat Mountains National Park Cooperative Management Board (two members and support staff) pursuant to Article 4 of the Nunavik Inuit Parks Impacts and Benefits Agreement for the Torngat Mountains National Park of Canada.
During the same period, Makivik Corporation provided assistance in resolving funding and related matters of the three Institutions of Public Government and in overall management of Nunavik Inuit lands, as well as establishing rules and procedures for proper management and use of said lands. Makivik Coporation was also in charge of monitoring and supervising the entry and access provisions of Article 12 of the NILCA and of researching, structuring and establishing places names for the Nunavik Marine Region.
Finally, Makivik Coporation provided investment and administration services for the Nunavik Inuit Trust, ensured application of the contracts and employment provisions of Article 13 of the NILCA including preparation and maintenance of a list of Nunavik Inuit enterprises, participated in the implementation of the overlapping arrangements contained in Articles 27 (Nunavut), 28 (Cree) and 29 (Labrador Inuit) of the NILCA, and undertook orientation and educational materials for use in briefing sessions for Nunavik regional organizations and institutions under the NILCA.
As stated in Article 17 of the NILCA, the Nunavik Inuit Trust (NIT) has been established by Makivik Corporation to receive, among other, capital transfer payments (Article 16). The aim of the NIT is to receive, hold and administer the Trust Patrimony for the benefit of the Trust Beneficiaries and distribute monies therefrom to the beneficiaries of the Trust, both individually and collectively, for educational, social, cultural and socio-economic needs of Trust Beneficiaries and generally to improve their social, cultural, educational and socio-economic conditions, their quality of life and the quality of community life.
In 2008-2011, the NIT received a total of $15,779,565 Footnote 10 Footnote 11 from AANDC for the capital transfer payments.
The Nunavik Marine Region Wildlife Board (NMRWB) is an Institution of Public Government mandated to be the main instrument of wildlife management and the main regulator of access to wildlife in the Nunavik Marine Region. Moreover, the NMRWB shall, at its discretion, perform the functions related to management and protection of wildlife and wildlife habitat in the Nunavik Marine Region. Finally, the NMRWB has a mandate to identify research priorities, manage a wildlife research fund and review research proposals and applications.
The NMRWB was established following the coming to force of the NILCA. The NMRWB's membership is composed of seven members consisting of three Makivik Corporation nominees, two Government of Canada nominees, one Government of Nunavut nominee and one chairperson nominated by the members of the NMRWB and appointed by the Minister of Fisheries and Oceans after consultation with the Minister of Environment Canada and Nunavut Minister of Environment.
The inaugural meeting of the NMRWB took place in Montreal in March 2009. Since this initial meeting, the NMRWB has met thirteen times between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2011. Topics discussed in the first meetings were mostly related to setting up the NMRWB's offices in Inukjuak and hiring staff. Once the NMRWB was established, issues related to its mandate started to be examined.
According to its mandate, the NMRWB actively participates in the management of wildlife resources. In 2009-2011, the NMRWB was involved in several activities in that domain such as the development of a National Polar Bear Conservation Strategy, the inter-jurisdictional co-development of a management plan for the Davis Strait Polar Bear sub-population, a long term beluga management plan and a new management system for the northern shrimp fishery in the Arctic. During this period, the NMRWB was also involved in the review of hunt requests, management plans and other reports for a number of species occurring in Nunavik.
For the research portion of its mandate, the NMRWB reviewed a number of research proposals from Environment Canada, Fisheries and Oceans Canada and the Government of Nunavut for work to be conducted in the Nunavik Marine Region.
Finally, funding guidelines and application forms have also been created by NMRWB staff. A strategy to develop a set of research priorities has also been discussed, but has not been implemented yet.
For further information, please refer to the NMRWB's website.
The NMRWB has obligations towards other NILCA organizations such as funding the Regional Nunavimmi Umajulivijiit Katujiqatigininga (RNUK)Footnote 12 and Local Nunavimmi Umajulivijiit Katujiqatigininga (LNUKs)Footnote 13. In 2009-2011, the NMRWB granted a total amount of $1,396,000Footnote 14 to the RNUK and LNUKs for their operational budgets and the organization of the RNUK's Annual General Meeting.
In 2008-2009, a $5 million payment was made by AANDC to the NMRWB for the establishment of a wildlife research fund as set out in the subsection 126.96.36.199. of the NILCA.
In 2008-2011, the NMRWB received a total of $10,142,244Footnote 15Footnote 16 through annual financial arrangements between the NMRWB and AANDC.
The Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB) is an Institution of Public Government mandated to be the main instrument for the screening and review of project proposals in the Nunavik Marine Region.
As set out in the NILCA, the primary functions of the NMRIRB are:
In accordance with the provisions of the NILCA, the NMRIRB's membership is composed of five members: two Makivik Corporation nominees, one Government of Canada nominee, one Government of Nunavut nominee and one Chairperson who is jointly nominated by the Makivik Corporation and Canada members and appointed by the federal Minister responsible for Northern Affairs in consultation with the Territorial Government.
The inaugural meeting of the NMRIRB was held in Montreal on December 16, 2009. In accordance with its by-laws, the NMRIRB met twice a year for a total of four times between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2011. These meetings have been jointly conducted with the Nunavik Marine Region Planning Commission (NMRPC).
In accordance with its mandate, many screening activities were initiated and/or finalized by the NMRIRB in relation to development projects to be undertaken within the boundaries of the Nunavik Marine Region:
For further information, please refer to the NMRIRB's website.
In 2009-2011, the NMRIRB received a total amount of $733,480Footnote 17Footnote 18 from AANDC to fund different activities related to its mandate and day-to day-business.
The Nunavik Marine Region Planning Commission (NMRPC) is an Institution of Public Government mandated to become the main instrument of land use planning in the Nunavik Marine Region. As set out in the NILCA, the primary functions of the NMRPC are to establish broad planning policies, and goals for the Nunavik Marine Region in conjunction with Governments, and to develop land use plans that guide and direct resource use and development in the Nunavik Marine Region.
In accordance with the provisions of the NILCA, the membership of the NMRPC consists of an equal number of members between those that are recommended by Governments and those that are nominated by Makivik Corporation, plus a Chairperson who is to be jointly nominated by the members and appointed by the Minister of AANDC, in consultation with the Territorial Government Minister responsible for Renewable Resources. The NMRPC is currently comprised of one Chairperson, two Makivik Corporation nominees, one Government of Canada nominee and one Government of Nunavut nominee.
The initial meeting of the NMRPC took place in Montreal on December 16, 2009. As stipulated its by-laws, the NMRPC met twice a year for a total of four times between April 1, 2009 and March 31, 2011. These meetings have been jointly conducted with the Nunavik Marine Region Impact Review Board (NMRIRB).
In 2009-2011, the NMRPC initiated some activities related to its mandate such as:
For further information, please refer to the NMRPC's website.
In 2009-2011, the NMRPC received a total of $1,147,936Footnote 19Footnote 20 from AANDC to fund different activities related to its mandate and day-to day-business.