Maintaining Cultural and Ecological Diversity on the Central Coast: Co-Management Options

First Nations Cooperative Management of Protected Areas in British Columbia: Tools and Foundation
by Julia Gardner
Dovetail Consulting,
April 2001
Occasional Paper Series, Issue 25:02 December 1999
A Draft Discussion Paper
Produced for the Sierra Club of British Columbia
Jessica Clogg, Staff Counsel
West Coast Environmental Law

This discussion paper explores a handful of First Nations co-management or interim measures agreements that are working well, or have strong potential to protect ecologically and culturally significant places from unsustainable resource extraction, while respecting aboriginal rights and title, and ensuring that aboriginal uses in these areas continues.

The CCLCRMP poses risks as well as opportunities for First Nations. Perceived risks include:

  • being considered a stakeholder rather than a government;
  • having First Nations’ interests ignored, yet the result justified because there was “consultation”;
  • being excluded from traditional lands/territories through parks creation; and
  • compromising or negatively affecting ongoing treaty negotiations.

Participation in land use planning can also create opportunities for First Nations. These include:

  • presenting an opportunity to influence the interim situationuntil the land question is resolved; for example, by preventing furtheralienation of resources or by allowing greater decision-making powerswhile treaty or title negotiations take place;
  • securing rights to traditional resource-gathering activities on land and sea through specific co-management arrangements; and
  • presentingopportunities for a “co-jurisdictional” approach that may ultimatelyprovide First Nations with greater control over their traditionalterritories than the land selection model.