Shell and the Tŝilhqot’in National Government invest in nature for the future
Nov. 12, 2020
Williams Lake, B.C. – Today, Shell and the Tŝilhqot’in National Government announced they are jointly undertaking a reforestation project in Tŝilhqot’in territory in the B.C. Interior where wildfires in recent years have significantly impacted the region and Tŝilhqot’in communities. Shell will provide funding, and the Tŝilhqot’in will manage project delivery.
The planting of approximately 840,000 trees, all native species, will be managed by Central Chilcotin Rehabilitation, a Tŝilhqot’in-owned forestry company. Reforestation will take place in fire-impacted areas that have not regenerated on their own or have been slow to regenerate.
Nature-based solutions – or natural climate solutions – are projects that protect, transform or restore land, such as forests, grasslands, and wetlands to help lower concentrations of greenhouse gases in the atmosphere. Given the scale of Canada’s landscape and natural carbon sinks, the country has tremendous potential for these projects, and Indigenous communities have a meaningful role to play. Globally, Shell plans to invest $200 million USD in 2020 and 2021 directly in natural ecosystems to act on global climate change.
In addition to reforesting land devastated by wildfires, this project has the potential to deliver other benefits, including Indigenous and local employment and improvements in the local ecosystem. Forest restoration will help to re-establish wildlife habitat for animals such as moose and deer that provide sustenance, and plants that can be used in traditional foods and medicines. The project also supports Tŝilhqot’in community goals for responsible and sustainable management of the lands and resources within Tŝilhqot’in territory. In future, the project could lead to further economic opportunities through the generation of carbon credits.
With the potential for future carbon credits, the Tŝilhqot’in nation is supporting Shell’s ambition to become a net-zero emissions energy business by 2050 or sooner, in step with society. Shell is investing in nature as just one of the ways to help reduce the amount of carbon dioxide (CO2) in the atmosphere. Shell is also reducing CO2 emissions in its operations, investing in lower-carbon energy and fuels, and giving customers ways to offset their emissions, such as through the Drive Carbon Neutral Program, which launched in Canada this week, where drivers can offset CO2 emissions from fuel purchases.
For more information on Shell and nature-based solutions in Canada visit www.shell.ca/nature
“We are very excited to see the Tŝilhqot’in reforestation project underway. Our communities were devasted by the wildfires in 2017, which were the result of poorly managed forests. Our people are still recovering from the impacts of those wildfires. The reforestation project is an opportunity for economic growth within our Nation and will help to ensure that the forests are properly managed for the benefit of all here now, and for future generations.” – Chief Joe Alphonse, TNG Tribal Chairman
“This project is a big win for our Nation as a whole. This joint partnership with Shell demonstrates the meaningful work that can be done when private businesses and corporations engage and work with First Nations and recognize our Aboriginal Title.” – Chief Jimmy Lulua, TNG Vice-Chair
“When Central Chilcotin Rehabilitation (CCR) was formed, these types of projects are what we hoped were going to be the result. CCR aims to ensure that the forests are being sustainably managed within Tŝilhqot’in territory and that our people are benefiting from the economic opportunities from our lands and forests.” – Chief Otis Guichon, Tŝideldel First Nation
“We are honoured to join with Tŝilhqot’in National Government on this reforestation project to restore areas devastated by wildfire. Indigenous Peoples in Canada have a unique connection to the land and water, and we want to support their stewardship of natural ecosystems. The Tŝilhqot’in communities have strong leadership, a keen understanding of land management practices, and a joint interest in exploring nature-based solutions for their forest management.” – Michael Crothers, Shell Canada President and Country Chair
About Shell Canada Limited
Shell has been operating in Canada for over 100 years and employs about 3,500 people across the country. Our business is providing energy to Canadians and people around the world, and we are one of the few truly integrated oil and gas companies in Canada. Learn more at www.shell.ca
About Tŝilhqot’in National Government
The Tŝilhqot’in National Government (TNG) is located in the city of Williams Lake, in the Western Canadian province of British Columbia. TNG was established in 1989 to represent the Tŝilhqot’in Nation; consisting of the six Tŝilhqot'in communities of Tl'etinqox, ʔEsdilagh, Yuneŝit'in, Tŝideldel, Tl'esqox and Xeni Gwet'in. The vision for TNG is to form an active government structure where the objectives of the six Tŝilhqot’in nations would be heard, supported and realized. TNG has a mandate to advocate on behalf of the Tsilhqot’in people to achieve their objectives to create an independent and prosperous future, one in which the Tŝilhqot’in can thrive as a people. Learn more at www.tsilhqotin.ca
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