NEWS RELEASE

September 10, 2015


Parks groups concerned about potential harm

to Mount Carleton by proposed snowmobile trail


Fredericton – A plan to widen a walking trail up the Maritimes’ highest peak and open it for snowmobile use within New Brunswick’s only designated Wilderness Park has the Canadian Parks and Wilderness Society, New Brunswick Chapter (CPAWS NB) and the Friends of Mount Carleton Provincial Park deeply concerned.

“We’ve recently learned about this trail proposal for Mount Carleton, which is part of a plan for increasing snowmobile trails in northern New Brunswick. The government appears to be ready to agree to this proposal without an environmental analysis or any public consultation. It would see a walking trail up Mount Carleton cleared to double its width to 12 feet wide, and the canopy over it removed to a height of 12 feet,” says Roberta Clowater, Executive Director of CPAWS NB.

“This type of development will fragment the habitat of wildlife species including moose, flying squirrels, and American marten. Sustained motorized access on this trail is also likely to compact the soil, causing fast rain runoff and erosion. Grooming the trail will encourage increased motorized vehicle access that could lead to them continuing up to the fragile mountain top. This is completely inappropriate within a designated wilderness park,” adds Clowater.

“For over eight years, the Friends of Mount Carleton Provincial Park Inc. has worked diligently to promote, preserve and protect the Park’s natural wilderness setting and its ecosystems. We have worked to develop, what we thought, was a good working relationship with the Department of Tourism, Heritage and Culture. The snowmobile hub infrastructure announcement came without any forewarning or consultation with our group,” says Susan Mulherin, President of Friends of Mount Carleton Provincial Park Inc.

“The Friends are committed to working cooperatively with the Department, while also ensuring that stewardship of the Park is maintained, and the protection of the environment, animal habitat and heritage is reflected in all policies and programs. We are concerned that in this case, that is not happening. Surely a compromise can be found that respects our protected areas and meets snowmobilers interests,” adds Mulherin.

No Public Discussion Whether Snowmobile Trail is Compatible with Wildest Parts of Wilderness Park

Mount Carleton park is New Brunswick’s only “Wilderness Provincial Park”, having been classified as such in revisions to the Parks Act in 2014. Those same revisions mandated the Department of Tourism, Heritage and Culture to develop Resource Management Plans for the provincial parks, outlining the recreational uses that would be compatible with conservation of the park natural areas.

“We are very concerned that the Department would consider making an irreversible decision such as this before the Resource Management Plan and the associated zoning are discussed publicly and approved. The Department is poised to, by default, decide that motorized vehicles are allowed in conservation zones in a wilderness park, setting a precedent from which it will be hard to back away.

“Allowing motorized recreation in one of the wildest parts of a wilderness park is inconsistent with how wilderness zones are generally managed in this level of park across Canada and the US. If the trail that goes up Mount Carleton is groomed for use by snowmobiles, it will prevent its use by people who want a wilderness experience of snowshoeing or cross-country skiing in that part of the park,” says Clowater.

“It’s important to tourists who are attracted to wilderness that the marketing of Mount Carleton Provincial Park as a wilderness destination be backed up with management that is consistent with a wilderness experience,” adds Clowater.

“This is one of the first tests of the revised Parks Act, which our organization has been applauding as a good step forward for the modernization of New Brunswick’s approach to parks management. If this trail is approved with no public engagement process or environmental analysis, in our view the government will have failed this first test of our new legislation,”adds Clowater.

CPAWS is recommending that the provincial government take the time to assess the potential impacts of this proposal, undertake public and stakeholder consultations, and then determine whether Mount Carleton is an appropriate location for such a development.

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For interviews, contact: Roberta Clowater, rclowater@cpaws.org; phone: 506-452-9902

Founded in 1963, CPAWS is Canada’s only nationwide charity dedicated solely to protecting our public land and water, and ensuring our parks are managed to protect the nature within.Learn more at www.cpawsnb.org.

News from Groups Archives

Action Alerts

Resquest for letters of support: Proposed name restoration for the Wolastoq

Sunday, 30 April 2017
by Alma
 The Wolastoq Grand Council supports our YOUTH GROUPS on their proposal for changing the name of the Saint John River, back to it’s original and proper name; Wolastoq (the beautiful & bountiful river ). We see this as a good place to begin the process of implementing the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples; which was strongly recommended by the Truth and Reconciliation Commission.  

Proposed Name Restoration: 
  • The name Saint John River back to it’s original indigenous name -  Wolastoq
Purpose: 
  • Wolastoq; (the beautiful river) is the original Indigenous name of the River.
  • Wolastoq is the name sake for the real identity and unique nationality of our People; the Wolastoqiyik.  Respecting the rights of Wolastoqiyik.
  • Scientific studies have now confirmed, what our people have always known; “that water has memory”.    This river will remember its original name.   
  • This deed would begin a process for reconciliation with a show of goodwill on the part of the Government of New Brunswick, and would;
  • Create opportunities for discussions and engagement around indigenous issues.
  • Wolastoqiyik have a right to retain their own names for communities, places and persons. 

The Wolastoq Grand Council is requesting support letters from our Allies; as individuals, organizations, and/or Groups.  For more information, contact Alma Brooks, 506-478-1256, almabrooks.26@outlook.com

Please send support letters to the following addresses:

The Wolastoq Grand Council,
Grand Chief; Ron Tremblay
50 Maliseet Drive
Fredericton, NB, E3A 2V9


David Coon
Office of the Green Party Leader
P.O. Box 6000
Fredericton, NB, E3B 5H1

Additional Information

  1. Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada
Carolyn Bennett; Minister of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada; has assured the Wolastoq Grand Council in writing that; - “Canada is committed to a renewed nation to nation relationship with indigenous peoples based on the recognition of rights, respect, cooperation and partnership.”   Carolyn Bennett also stated that ; - “Achieving full reconciliation between indigenous and non-indigenous people in Canada is at the heart of Indigenous and Northern Affairs Canada’s mandate, and that the government of “Canada will engage with Indigenous peoples, provinces, territories, and Canadians on how to implement the Declaration in accordance with Canada’s Constitution”.

  1. Andrea Bear-Nicholas
As described in a 2011 article by Andrea Bear-Nicholas, Maliseet historian:  
  1. The first step in the dispossession for the indigenous peoples in the Maritimes began in earnest immediately after the British capture of the French fort at Louisbourg in 1758.   Where place names and names of First Nations in the entire region had been inscribed on earlier maps; both would soon be erased by colonial cartographers in a process described by J. B. Harley as cartographic colonialism.  The justifications for these erasures was found in the doctrine of discovery.   
  2. The second step in the dispossession of indigenous peoples in Nova Scotia began immediately after signing of the Treaty of 1760 by Passamaquoddy and Maliseet Leaders, and later the signing of the Mascarene Treaty.   Although there was no surrender of any lands in either of these Treaties; 1.5 million acres of Maliseet land which outlawed the surveying and expropriation of lands not yet ceded by the indigenous inhabitants or purchased by the Crown.    


  3. United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples
The United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples:   Articles 1, 2, 6, & 13   support and provide a guide for the implementation leading to reconciliation.

As a distinct ‘people,’ we have a right to our accurate identity and nationality.
  • Indigenous Peoples have the right to the full enjoyment as a collective or as individuals of all human rights and fundamental freedoms as recognized in the Charter of the United Nations, the Universal Declaration of Human Rights, and international human rights law. 
  • Indigenous peoples and individuals are free and equal to all other peoples and individuals and have the right to be free from any kind of discrimination, in the exercise of their rights, in particular that based on their indigenous origin and identity. 
  • Every indigenous individual has the right to their own nationality. 
  • Indigenous people have a right to retain their own names for communities, places and persons.  “States shall take effective measures to ensure that this right is protected”.

ACTION ALERT: Reinstate funding to the Canadian Environmental Network

Friday, 03 February 2017
by Raissa Marks
The Canadian Environmental Network and its provincial affiliate networks need your help!

Historically, the Canadian Environmental Network and its provincial affiliate networks including the NBEN received annual core funding from the Government of Canada. This was used to facilitate networking on environmental issues across the country, coordinate national and provincial issue-based caucuses, coordinate ENGO participation in federal public consultation processes, and maintain open lines of communication between ENGOs and the federal government.

In 2011, as part of the across-the-board cuts to civil society organizations by the previous federal government, all federal funding to the RCEN and its provincial affiliate networks was cut. This left the national network and most of the affiliates with functioning primarily on a voluntary basis with limited capacity to do their work.

There is hope that the current government will provide for renewed funding in its upcoming budget. This funding is crucial for the survival of the national network and many of the provincial affiliate networks. A proposal has been submitted. It now needs strong and immediate support from environmental groups and individuals across the country.

This is where you come in!

Please take a few minutes to write to Prime Minister Trudeau and your MP telling them why you value the RCEN, your provincial affiliate network, or environmental networking at the national level in general. Feel free to use the template letter provided below. You can personalize it based on your experience or simply copy and paste.

Trudeau’s email is justin.trudeau@parl.gc.ca and you can find your MP’s email here: http://www.parl.gc.ca/Parliamentarians/en/members

Let’s show our federal politicians that a strong, well-connected grassroots environmental community is essential to a strong Canada!

Draft Template Letter:

Dear Prime Minister Trudeau,

I am writing to ask that annual core funding to the Canadian Environmental Network (RCEN) be reinstated.

Historically, the RCEN provided a crucial link between environmental groups across the country, both large and small. This link was vital in helping communities address environmental issues right across the country and ensuring a robust approach to the development of environmental policy in Canada.

Since funding was cut in 2011, the RCEN and most of its provincial affiliate networks have been functioning primarily on a voluntary basis with limited capacity to do their work. This is not acceptable. A strong, well-connected grassroots environmental community is essential to a strong Canada. I urge you to reinstate core funding for this crucial work immediately.

Sincerely,
Les groupes d'amis des parcs sont inquiets des dommages potentiels que pourrait causer le sentier de motoneige proposé au Mont Carleton