Yukon Premier Sandy Silver opposes Trudeau’s arctic drilling ban which he says takes control of decision making on matters that affect their economy and their own revenue source, out of the North’s hands.
The Premiers of all three territories are disappointed with the lack of consultation coming from the federal government on the drilling ban which breaks the Liberal’s pledge to consult with and improve relationships with First Nations groups.
First Nations groups say they’re coming forward with the Premier of the Yukon to deliver a consistent message, though each self-governing group has different priorities.
This comes after the Premiers of both Nunavut and the Northwest Territories slammed Trudeau for similar reasons. All three say the federal government has too much control over decisions made in their regions.
Both the Northwest Territories and the Yukon have agreements with the federal government to increase control over lands and resources, while Nunavut is in talks with the Liberals to transfer more control to that region.
This matters because combined, the Mackenzie Delta and Beaufort Sea hold an estimated 67 trillion cubic feet in natural gas and 7 billion barrels of oil which equals billions of dollars of potential revenue for the Territories if developed. Northwest Territories Premier, Bob Macleod says his region is counting on the Prime Minister to replace the billions in lost revenue that will result from keeping these resources in the ground.
The Yukon Premier, four ministers and seven First Nations chiefs, along with the grand chief of council for that territory met with the Liberals last week to discuss the issues facing the North.
Justin Trudeau later doubled down on his Arctic drilling ban at a town hall, defending his decision by suggesting that the science isn’t settled on whether offshore activity can be done safely.
This shows the Prime Minister hasn’t listened to these communities who are counting on the development of these resources for prosperity.