Prior to MDMER, the Sisson Project obtained Environmental Impact Assessment (“EIA” approvals in 2015 and 2017 respectively) from the provincial and federal governments. A cooperation agreement between Woodstock First Nation and Sisson Partnership is in effect and the Province of New Brunswick has signed a housing agreement with the province`s six Maliseet First Nations. The company has also worked to optimize engineering designs and collect interest in the purchase of mining products, as well as to meet the province`s EIA conditions, some of which must be met before work begins and others during the operation phase. In addition, discussions to ensure project funding are progressing. The MMER planning procedure is a separate procedure from the authorisation procedure provided for in Article 32(35)(2) of the Law on Fisheries, with its own information obligations. In the case of a project requiring the listing of a body of water as an TIA, in accordance with Annex 2 of the MMER, the proponent must provide specific information in support of the EA decision and regulatory processes. At least the proponent must carry out a thorough assessment of alternatives to the disposal of mining waste. It is strongly recommended that this assessment be carried out in accordance with the guidelines developed by the European Commission for the assessment of alternatives to the disposal of mining waste. This process shall be implemented during the EA process in order to meet the deadlines set out in this Agreement and to minimise the time required to implement the MMER amendment process, if recommended. This alternative assessment must objectively and rigorously evaluate all possible options for the disposal of mine waste.
The proponent must demonstrate, through the EA and this assessment, that the proposed use of the water body as an TIA from an environmental, technical, socio-economic and economic perspective is the most appropriate option for the disposal of mine waste. The proponent must also present the proposed mitigation measures and compensation plans for fish at the bottom of page 4 (FHCPs) to compensate for the loss of fishing space related to the deposit of deleterious substances in the TIA (in accordance with section 27.1 of the MMER) and to compensate for the loss of fish living space through work and undertakings related to the TIA (in accordance with subsection 35, paragraph 2 of the Fisheries Act). The FHCP(s) shall clearly specify the aspects of compensation intended to compensate for habitat loss resulting from the deposit of harmful substances in the TIAs and the aspects intended to compensate for the harmful alteration, disturbance or destruction of fish habitat, in accordance with Article 35(2) of the Law on Fisheries. The DFO requirement is that the proponent submit a separate FHCP, which specifically compensates for the loss of fish habitat related to the deposition of deleterious substances in the TIA. This information shall be used to support the EA Decision and the amendment of Annex 2 to the MMER. The articles indicate that the Maliseet has received an “incentive package” concerning the Sisson mine. . . .