Biigtigong Nishnaabeg

Watershed Modelling and Monitoring Program

In 2014, TransCanada announced the Energy East Pipeline Project: a proposal to construct and operate a 4,500km pipeline system to transport oil from Alberta to New Brunswick at a rate of 1.1 million barrels of crude oil per day. As part of this project, TransCanada intends to modify an existing natural gas pipeline within the traditional territories of Biigtigong Nishnaabeg. Concerned that this would impact the waters and lands that are important to them, the community wished to begin collecting baseline information on their watershed within their traditional territories. To help them achieve this goal, they reached out to our team of experts to help with the development of a watershed modelling and monitoring program.

As part of this project, SVS consultants mapped and conducted geospatial modelling of the watershed within Biigtigong Nishnaabeg’s traditional territories, designed a water quality monitoring program (based on surface water, sediment and benthic invertebrate analysis), conducted a baseline assessment of water quality, and prepared a final report based on findings.

Value for the Client Group

By creating the watershed modelling and monitoring program, our team helped Biigtigong Nishnaabeg develop several important tools including a high quality map of the Upper Pic River and Aguasabon River, a baseline report of water quality and benthic invertebrates, and a water quality monitoring program. These tools have helped the community identify potential impacts to their rights and interests as a result of Energy East, and serve as a resource for future development projects occurring within their traditional territory. This has been instrumental in negotiations with TransCanada and has provided Biigtigong Nishnaabeg with the ability to leverage mitigation and accommodation measures to ensure the continued health of their lands and waters.

Our team also helped build capacity within the community by identifying opportunities to train and hire community members to become environmental monitors.

Summary

Budget: $47,895

Pic River, ON

2016 – 2017

Expertise

Water Resources

Ecology

Environmental Monitoring

Capacity Building

The monitoring program has helped the community identify potential impacts to their rights and interests as a result of Energy East, and serves as a resource for future development projects occurring within their traditional territory.

Melissa Tonge

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