Questions Regarding Northern Road Link and Project Status

Reference Number

Good morning Anjala and Caitlin,


We have a number of questions that you may be able to assist us in answering.


1. As you likely know Webequie has submitted their final terms of reference for the Ontario EA process and Marten Falls is seeking comment on their Ontario EA Study Area boundaries.


What impact, if any will these, actions by the road proponents have on the respective federal EAs?


2. Noront has made recent public statements on a number of EA issues that require clarification.


"Alan Coutts said he has no reason to believe that the federal Regional Assessment process ( delay the start of operations at the Eagle's Nest Mine based on his conversation with Natural Resources Minister Seamus O’Regan."

"In talking to Minister O'Regan, we're being led to believe this could get done over a two-year period."


Can you share any details of the conversation between the Minister and Mr. Coutts? Meeting Agenda? Meeting summary?


Is Coutt’s projected two year timeline for the currently paused regional EA accurate?


When is Canada proposing to re-start the regional EA?


3.What is the status of the Northern Road Link Project EA?


Have the proponents submitted their initial project description to IAAC?


If so, when will Canada be in position to share the project description with Neskantaga?

To be clear, we are not pressing for an early federal decision on the project description.


4. Noront is reporting that:

"Noront will re- initiate EA activities for its Eagle's Nest nickel-copper-platinum group element deposit. Because an all-season access road was originally part of the Eagle's Nest Terms of Reference, Noront will submit a request for the access road to be excluded and for an adjusted Terms of Reference to be issued by the province of Ontario. “


How will the proposed exclusion of the all season access road from the Eagles Nest provincial EA TOR impact the federal EA for Eagles Nest?

If there is a significant impact on the federal EA for Eagles Nest please share the details.


5. Please update us on contribution agreements you referenced in your June email.


6. The Pandemic.

We were very disappointed when Webequie and Marten Falls requested comment on significant EA documents while Neskantaga and other Treaty No. 9 Nations were fully occupied with “back to school” preparations. In our view no significant EA actions or decisions should be taken by the proponents or the regulators during this critical period.


7. Consultation Fatigue.

This would require a much larger conversation.The issue arises from what we view as an improper incremental project by project approach to EA in the region.The solution requires a mechanism for consultation prior to the real strategic decision regarding whether or not the the development of the region as a whole should proceed, and a meaningful First Nation decision making role in that strategic decision.


The First Nation back to school issues should be resolved by October.I suggest we schedule a call for the first week of October.


Let us know your thoughts.




David Peerla

Submitted by
Administrator on behalf of Neskantaga First Nation
Impact Statement
Public Notice
Date Submitted
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