Environmental Resource Initiatives

The Environmental Resources Initiatives Department houses MSGC’s programs relating to environmental sustainability and protection.

Currently, the ERI Department is focusing on three key areas:

Climate Monitoring Program – Initiated Fall 2018

The purpose of MSGC’s Climate Monitoring Program (CMP) is to enable increased climate monitoring and response capacity for individual Settlements and MSGC as an organization. The program provides technical training, information and policy support to the Metis Settlements environmental programs, the Climate Committee, and the MSGC Board and Assembly and engages the Settlements through education activities to increase overall awareness of climate change and related issues.


Highlight of Recent Activities
• Conducted site water testing for Fishing Lake Metis Settlement
• Worked with Crown-Indigenous Relations and Northern Affairs Canada to develop a program to continue with the pilot monitoring training with the Metis Settlements for Year 2
• Conducted an all-Settlement survey to obtain community priorities, concerns, and direction of training sessions for future years

Up Next
• Community information and engagement sessions (Pandemic restrictions pending)
• Climate Monitoring Training sessions
• Community surveys to gather input on key concerns, priorities, and future program activities

See below for information on MSGC’s work as part of Alberta’s Indigenous Climate Leadership initiative.

Fish Habitat Protection Project – Initiated Summer 2020

In alignment with MSGC’s Climate Monitoring Program, the purpose of the Fish Habitat Protection Program (FHPP) is to develop draft Community Action Plans for the testing, monitoring, and protection of fish bearing waterbodies that are important to the Metis Settlements. This project will restore and/or improve fish habitats in the selected waterbodies while helping the Metis Settlements General Council educate and train community members, thereby building capacity within the Metis Settlements.

Highlight of Recent Activities
• Worked with the Department of Fisheries and Oceans to develop a comprehensive contribution agreement which details the activities, schedule and budget for year 1 of the project
• Established Steering Committee and Terms of Reference to guide the project
• Conducted an all-Settlement survey to engage community members and gather input on the concerns and priorities of the fish bearing water bodies most used by the community members

Check out the survey results!

Up Next:
• Data analysis of survey results to establish the foundation of the Community Action Plans
• Workshops with the Steering Committee to analyze and build on survey data and to review draft of Community Action Plan.
• Present draft Action Plans to General Assembly for their review

Indigenous Protected and Conserved Areas Initiative – Initiated Fall 2019

The purpose of this program is to develop information and partnerships to support the establishment of an Indigenous Protected and Conserved Area (IPCA) in two areas in the Athabasca region that are of cultural and ecological significance to the Metis Settlements. Objectives for proposing an IPCA include protecting the rights and traditional uses of the Metis Settlements, respecting the Metis Settlements’ historical and ongoing relationship with the land, and increasing the formal role of the Metis Settlements in environmental stewardship.

Check out the IPCA website & survey here!

Highlight of Recent Activities
• Established study areas for the project
• Preliminary landscape analyses and map development
• Preliminary engagement with internal and external stakeholders
• Study design and work planning with Settlement consultation staff and consultants for TLU studies
• Study design and work planning for biophysical assessments within the Study Areas
• Site visits to Wolf Lake and Touchwood Lake

Up Next:
• Participating Settlements will collect and analyze TLU and historic data about the Study Areas
• Secondary site visits to Study Areas to ground truth archeological, and TLU data
• Biophysical analysis
• Second phase of stakeholder analysis and engagement planning

MSGC Climate Leadership Initiative – 2019 Progress Report

The MSGC Head Office in Edmonton was awarded a $1 Million Retrofit Energy Efficiency grant in January 2019.  Energy wasted emits gas emissions, which in turn heats our Earth, which in turn changes the climate.  Repairing or retrofitting areas that emit wasted heat is a major component of energy efficiency and reducing our carbon footprint.

The building we occupy has had all windows replaced with an R4 value product. The R value of a window determines its resistance level to atmospheric heat, This upgrade will allow the building to stay cooler in the summer months without dependence on air conditioning.

We have also completed a solar install that will produce 76.7 KW of energy. Equating to 81,000KW hours per year and up to 15% of our energy consumption! This in turn reduces our electricity costs, our dependency on the electrical grid and our impact on the environment.