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From anti-fracking protests in New Brunswick, to threats of litigation against oil pipelines in British Columbia, to allegations of health impacts in Alberta’s oil sands, Canada’s aboriginals are often portrayed as blockers of natural resource development. But Jean Paul Gladu, president and CEO of the Toronto-based Canadian Council for Aboriginal Business (CCAB), said many among Canada’s 1.4 million aboriginals are successfully involved in building Canada’s resource economy and many more want to participate in responsible resource development. Mr. Gladu, a member of the Sand Point First Nation located on the eastern shores of Ontario’s Lake Nipigon, spoke to Claudia Cattaneo, the Financial Post’s Western Business Columnist, about how resource companies and aboriginals can grow together.
Q. What do Canada’s aboriginals want from energy development?
A. They want to be a part of the process and to benefit from the process. Communities are living in the landscape, and it’s very appropriate that we are engaged, benefitting and being at the table to mitigate any potential impacts that are going to result of development. We have people and children and future children that we need to look after by protecting the environment, with jobs and businesses. All those things contribute to the health and prosperity of the community.
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