Policy Sectors

Industrial Projects and Impact Assessment

NWAC supports the implementation of impact assessment legislative and policy frameworks to uphold Indigenous self-determination and decision-making in order to ensure Indigenous women, girls, and gender-diverse people are protected from negative effects of industrial projects.

Our goals are to:

  • The MMIWG Calls for Justice must be fully implemented to prevent violence against Indigenous women and gender-diverse people through resource extraction industries.
  • Renewable energy needs prioritization. Renewable energy-related mining must be regulated to minimize negative impacts on Indigenous women and gender-diverse people, while maximizing positive impacts.
  • Inter-provincial/territorial agreements are needed to ensure national and provincial standards for industrial project assessments protect and advance the rights and interests of Indigenous women.

Summary:

Industrial projects often have disproportionately negative environmental, social, economic, and cultural impacts on Indigenous women, who face significant barriers in employment, workplace advancement, and business opportunities in energy and mining sectors. At the same time, Indigenous women, girls, and gender diverse people shoulder a disproportionate burden of risks from these projects. Industrial work camps can increase sexual violence risk against Indigenous women and girls- which is perhaps the most reprehensible impact of industrial projects.

NWAC made submissions to House and Senate standing committees studying Bill C-69 to highlight the importance of a culturally relevant gender-based analysis in the impact assessment processes. NWAC took a leading role in ensuring that, for the first time, federal environmental legislation set out specific requirements for environmental decision-makers to consider impacts on Indigenous women specifically.

NWAC also prepared a culturally relevant gender-based analysis of Canada’s Minerals and Metals Plan for Natural Resources Canada, outlining negative and positive effects of mining activities on Indigenous women.