Supreme Court of Canada Rejects Aboriginal Commercial Logging Rights

The Aboriginal Law Group

On July 20, 2005 the Supreme Court of Canada overturned Court of Appeal decisions from New Brunswick and Nova Scotia finding that Mi’kmaq people have a treaty right to harvest timber for commercial purposes. In so doing, the Court also provided guidance on how to assess aboriginal title claims. The decision is therefore of significance to forestry and other resource sectors in British Columbia and other parts of western and northern Canada where aboriginal title claims remain outstanding.