There are some strange anomalies in a new fundraiser campaign for anti-LNG activists.. Journalist Grant Warkentin looked at the situation for Resource Works.
Opponents of LNG projects in BC’s north are getting money from an Ontario family foundation with a major link to numerous mining megaprojects.
The “RAVEN” non-profit based in Victoria, which acts as a third-party fundraiser for First Nations involved in environmental court cases, recently announced it had found two new “matching funds” donors to “make sure the whole Unist’ot’en case against Coast Gas Link will be absolutely covered by donations.”
A proposed natural gas pipeline from Peace River country to Kitimat has been opposed for several years by some members of the Wet’suwet’en nation in Northern BC. Pipeline opponents are now receiving new cash to continue their fight.
One of the new donors to their cause is the Klein-Panneton Foundation, a “not-for-profit corporation” with more than $700,000 in cash to spend. In the past seven days, the foundation has made contributions to RAVEN’s campaign, matching other donors who gave amounts ranging from $10.20 to $510.
The Klein-Panneton Foundation lists Gerald Panneton as a director. He has a long history in Canada and the USA of involvement with mining megaprojects, and is described as a “serial mine discoverer” in the mining trade press. In the last five years he has been involved with:
- Trying to restart a California gold mine
- Trying (and failing) to get a massive open-pit vanadium mine built in Nevada
- Dealing with the fallout in court from his time with one of Canada’s largest gold mines
- Serving on the board of Canadian Metals Inc
Some of the recent projects he worked on are connected to ‘green’ energy. For instance, vanadium is usually used to make steel, but it is quickly becoming an important ingredient in high-tech batteries. And Canadian Metals Inc. recently received $1 million from the Quebec government’s Forest Industry Diversification Fund to look at the possibility of building a silicon processing plant in Baie-Comeau, presumably to take advantage of the growing demand for silicon in the manufacture of solar panels