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The Yukon’s Open-Entry Mining System declares a breach of the duty to consult with First Nations

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Yukon Chamber of Mines

In Ross River Dena Council v. Government of Yukon, 2012 YKCA 14, the Yukon Court of Appeal held that the Government of Yukon must consult before opening up for staking (and the acquisition of mineral title) areas covered by Aboriginal title claims of the Ross River Dena Council (RRDC), a non-treaty Yukon First Nation. Additionally, the Court held that an opportunity to consult with the RRDC must be inserted into the mineral title regime before certain activities could take place on mineral claims, where claim holders are presently able to undertake such activities without any permit or licence from the Crown. Recognizing that such changes might take some time to implement, the Court suspended the operation of the decision for one year. Fasken Martineau's Kevin O'Callaghan appeared as co-counsel for the intervenor, Yukon Chamber of Mines, at the Court of Appeal.



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