I think the Supreme Court is erring in maintaining the view that Canada’s Indigenous communities should not have the right to reject proposed resource development projects that affect their territories.
The land that supposedly belongs to the Crown and to private citizens was dubiously acquired by agreements concluded under duress, and never implemented in good faith by government or private industry. Denying Indigenous communities the ability to reject dangerous projects in the lands they retain control over is an unacceptable imposition by any other part of Canadian society. If resource extraction sites or export corridors are to be partly situated in Indigenous territory, it should only take place in the context of a voluntary partnership between those with an interest in the health and integrity of the land and those who are proposing dams, bitumen sands mines, wind farms, concentrating solar and solar photovoltaic sites, high-voltage power lines, nuclear power plants, etc. It’s to be expected that ownership and decision-making of such projects should be a shared undertaking between governments.
Canada’s history of bad faith and exploitation means they are the party to such agreements that ought to be viewed with suspicion and considered on parole. The heart of Canada’s grim legacy of settler-Indigenous relations lies in forcing people to accept the ways we want them to live. Any plausible pathway to reconciliation must be based on consent.