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Alberta

First Nation applauds new initiative protecting boreal forest in the Kitaskino Nuwenene Wildland Park

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February 11, 2021

Fort Chipewyan-AB-Mikisew Cree First Nation applauds a major expansion in protecting the boreal forest area in the Kitaskino Nuwenene Wildland Park initiative.

The announcement to expand the protected area by nearly 150,00 hectares means more of the area south of Wood Buffalo National Park will be protected along with the headwaters, which flow into the Delta area. This marks a key step in a collaborative effort between Mikisew Cree First Nation, Government of Alberta, Government of Canada, energy, mineral and forestry companies.

Today’s announcement is about protecting the land and celebrating partnerships between First Nations, government and industry,” said Mikisew Chief, Peter Powder. “We wouldn’t be on the doorstep of this significant expansion without cooperation. We hope this means we can move forward with the western expansion of the Kitaskino-Nuwenene Wildland Park as part of Mikisew’s stewardship vision for our lands, waters and iconic species such as woodland caribou and wood bison.”

After engaging with the community, it was clear leaders and land users wanted to protect this area for future generations. The overall goal of the Kitaskino Nuwenene Wildland Park ​is for Mikisew Cree First Nation and other Indigenous groups to play a key role in safeguarding the area and the traditional resources within it. The expansion has received a strong endorsement from the Athabasca Chipewyan Cree First Nation, Fort Chipewyan Metis, Fort McKay First Nation, Fort McKay Métis, and Fort McMurray Métis. Kitaskino-Nuwenene translated means, “Our Land” in Cree and Dene.

Moving this forward is another step in implementing the Nikechinahonan Framework, which is the vision of the Mikisew to ensure our cultural survival. We look forward to building on this momentum by working to protect more habitat of the Ronald Lake Bison Herd and by continuing our efforts to save the Peace Athabasca Delta‘ said Melody Lepine, Mikisew Cree First Nation director.

Kitaskino Nuwenene Wildland Park is located along the southern border of Wood Buffalo National Park in northern Alberta. Phase 1 was established in 2019. This project was undertaken with the financial support of Environment and Climate Change Canada through Canada’s Nature Fund.

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Alberta

Alberta RCMP investigating deaths of mother and her toddler as homicides

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HINTON, Alta. — Alberta RCMP say its major crimes unit is investigating the deaths of a mother and her 16-month-old toddler as homicides. 

Mounties in Hinton, Alta., say the pair were reported missing on Thursday night from the community 290 kilometres west of Edmonton.

Police say the bodies of the mother and her child have since been found.

RCMP say a 53-year-old man was arrested Friday in Hinton and remains in custody.

There was no word on any charges.

Police say there is no risk to the public.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 17, 2021

The Canadian Press

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Alberta

B.C. willing to help Alberta in COVID-19 battle, but needs hospital space: Horgan

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VANCOUVER — Premier John Horgan says the province is willing to help Alberta when it comes to battling COVID-19, but the priority is on ensuring hospitals in British Columbia don’t become overwhelmed.

Horgan says he’s spoken to Alberta Premier Jason Kenney about the COVID-19 situation and B.C. will help in any way it can.

But Horgan says the focus for B.C. is ensuring that its intensive care units do not become overwhelmed with COVID-19 patients and force the cancellation of more surgeries.

B.C. reported 768 new cases of COVID-19 on Friday, bringing the number of active cases to 6,031.

The province also reported 11 new deaths, raising the death toll to 1,888 since the pandemic began.

As of Friday, the province says 86.5 per cent of eligible people 12 and older had received their first dose of a COVID-19 vaccine and almost 79 per cent had received their second dose.

This report by The Canadian Press was first published Sept. 17, 2021.

The Canadian Press

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