As part of AltaGas’ growth over the past two decades, our company has been privileged to develop relationships with the Indigenous communities within whose traditional territories our projects and operations are located. AltaGas strives to conduct development activity in an environmentally, ecologically, socially, culturally and economically sustainable manner for the benefit of future generations, and values collaboration with Indigenous peoples in determining how this may be achieved in conjunction with our projects.
AltaGas works to build long-term collaborative relationships that are based on trust, the willingness to listen and learn, and the desire to involve Indigenous peoples meaningfully in every phase of our developments. Our approach is underscored by principles that help to enable strong relationships, including:
- Open and honest communication throughout all aspects of a project.
- A willingness to integrate Indigenous teachings and knowledge to help inform AltaGas’ environmental actions and community solutions as part of the project planning and development.
- A desire to engage with as many community members as possible, and
- A desire to educate, train and build capacity so that Indigenous peoples may participate in the planning, construction and operations of a project.
AltaGas is proud of the relationships it has built in the different areas it operates and looks to the future with a promise of partnerships, projects and ventures.
AltaGas is committed to building long term, mutually beneficial working relationships with Indigenous peoples while recognizing and respecting individual values and traditions. AltaGas is committed to developing these relationships on a foundation of respect for the languages, customs, and political, social and cultural institutions of Indigenous peoples.
Our Indigenous Peoples Policy directs how we develop mutually beneficial relations with Indigenous communities affected by our operations. It provides direction and a means to clarify how the company will interact with Indigenous communities. It also sets standards for employees and contractors to interact with Indigenous representatives, and ensures a consistent approach for all projects. AltaGas' policy identifies guiding principles for Indigenous peoples in order to achieve these goals.These guiding principles include:
- Respect for legal rights, cultural values and traditional land use
- Recognition of the distinct needs of different Indigenous Peoples with unique languages, cultures, priorities and protocols and the need to research project-specific issues
- Acknowledgment that all communities are different. A distinct community specific approach will need to be adopted for consultation and accommodation based on the impact of each Project.
- Open dialogue through communication and consultation.
- AltaGas employee education and training on Indigenous Peoples Policy
- Community development and partnerships
This policy promotes the understanding of, and sensitivity to Indigenous peoples and the issues important to them based on the concerns they raise.
Key Action Areas
Cultural Awareness Program
This program is designed to develop awareness of the history and culture of Indigenous peoples. This program equips employees and contractors with the skills required to foster understanding and create better relationships between AltaGas and Indigenous communities.
AltaGas First Nations Development Fund
Nominated for a 2014 Social Finance Award, this partnership between AltaGas and Indian Business Corporation is the first of its kind. The fund provides access to capital for Indigenous entrepreneurs in Canada.
Agreements with Indigenous Communities
As part of its engagement with Indigenous peoples, AltaGas may enter into agreements with Indigenous peoples. These agreements may range in nature from short-term arrangements that enable Indigenous peoples to learn more about AltaGas’ proposed developments and participate in regulatory processes, to agreements that define how AltaGas and Indigenous communities can collaborate over a longer period of time on matters such as training, education, and environmental protection.