Indigenous Communities & Energy

The Indian Resource Council (IRC) Looks to Secure Indigenous Participation in TMX

The Indian Resource Council (IRC) Looks to Secure Indigenous Participation in TMX

It's important that people know that the majority of First Nations on pipeline routes support oil and gas development in Canada.  Our nation's resources with genuine benefit sharing are the only realistic chance we have to end poverty in many indigenous communities. 

Please see the press release below outlining the support of the Indian Resource Council for the TMX Pipeline. 


April 23, 2018, Tsuu Tína Nation - The Indian Resource Council (IRC) of Canada supports Kinder Morgan Canada’s Trans Mountain Expansion pipeline on the following conditions:

  • That there is sufficient and meaningful protection of Sec. 35 of Canada’s Constitutional rights by all levels of government in Canada;
  • That all impacts to these rights are properly identified and sufficiently accommodated;
  • That lands and resources necessary for the continued exercise of Sec. 35 rights are also protected; and
  • That First Nations have meaningful economic participation in all projects occurring where Sec. 35 rights are impacted.

According to Chief Okimaw Fox of Onion Lake First Nation and Chairman of the Indian Resource Council:

“Oil and Gas resources have been our bread and butter for many years.  We want to get out of the paternalism of the Indian Act and oil and gas participation is certainly one way to do that.  The IRC Board and Executive want to move our product where ever the market is.  Canada is the envy of the world as a leader in pipeline technology, environment stewardship and regulatory excellence.  The missing piece is to get First Nations at the decision-making table.  Industry wants to be our partners and together we can get this done in a good way”.

Stephen Buffalo, President and CEO agrees:

“It is imperative that Indigenous people are included in all discussions and decisions relating to KM and other pipelines. We want and demand participation and equity ownership in these projects”.

As many First Nations are owners of oil and gas resources that need to go to market, the safe construction and operation of pipelines is critical to the economies of these Nations.  IRC recognizes that whether or not a member of IRC, all First Nations have the right to oppose or support any project.

The Indian Resource Council of Canada (IRC) is an advocacy organization that represents the interests of over 130 First Nations across Canada that have oil and gas rights – upstream, downstream and midstream – on their reserves and traditional lands. 

Our goal and mandate is to ensure that our members are at the table when issues of natural resource development are discussed and that we, as Indigenous people with rights and title to land and resources, benefit as well from this development.


For more information, please contact:

Stephen Buffalo, President/CEO, IRC