The Joint Chiefs and Councils of The Saugeen Ojibway Nation address the Township of Ignace Potential Hosting Agreement with NWMO

The Saugeen Ojibway Nation (SON) Joint Chiefs and Councils would like to address the recent developments surrounding the signing of a potential hosting agreement between the Mayor and Council of the Township of Ignace and the Nuclear Waste Management Organization (NWMO), announced on March 18, 2024.

We are aware of the agreement and recognize it as a step in the ongoing discussion process pertaining to the proposed NWMO Deep Geologic Repository (DGR) to store Canada’s used nuclear fuel. However, it is crucial to clarify that this agreement does not represent the Township of Ignace’s willingness to host the DGR as many steps remain in their process before such a decision is made. Moreover, before the northern site can be selected, the consent of the Wabigoon Lake Ojibway Nation (WLON) is also required. We respect WLON's right of self-determination and their decision-making processes concerning their Territory.

This recent development does not impact our own ongoing evaluation of NWMO's proposal to build a DGR in our Territory near Teeswater, Ontario. We remain committed to thoroughly examining the potential impacts and benefits that hosting such a project may have on our Territory and our People. Despite external announcements or agreements, SON will continue to work through our own independent process. Due to the long history and ongoing reality of the nuclear industry in our Territory, we face unique challenges as we grapple with this difficult issue. We are dedicated to ensuring that our Members have a strong voice in any decisions that may affect our Territory and our future.

As municipalities within SON Territory begin to take their stance on the proposed project, we anticipate similar developments closer to home. We urge our Membership to stay informed and engaged as these discussions unfold. The SON Joint Chiefs and Councils are committed to ensuring that our Members are actively involved in the process. We value your input, concerns, and perspectives, and we will continue to prioritize your voices throughout this journey.

In conclusion, we express our gratitude to our Membership for your ongoing support and dedication to the well-being of our communities and our Territory. Together, we will navigate these complex issues with thoughtfulness, respect, a commitment to environmental stewardship and safeguarding the rights and interests of the Saugeen Ojibway Nation.

 

Chi-miigwetch,
Ogimaa Greg Nadjiwon, Chippewas of Nawash Unceded First Nation & Ogimaa Conrad Ritchie, Chippewas of Saugeen First Nation

Lacey Thopmson

Communication Associate