Mi’kmaw Conservation Group

The Confederacy of Mainland Mi’kmaq (CMM) is a tribal organization located in Millbrook First Nation, Nova Scotia. The mission statement best summarizes the objectives of the organization: “To proactively promote and assist Mi’kmaw communities’ initiatives toward self-determination and enhancement of community.” The CMM delivers a variety of community programs and advisory services to eight Mi’kmaq Communities in Nova Scotia. The staff consists of a team of professional First Nations experts who bring unique Mi’kmaw perspectives to current issues. 

In 2012, the CMM established the Mi’kmaw Conservation Group (MCG) with the objective of promoting and restoring the concept and practice of Netukulimk in Nova Scotia. These watersheds are of historical significance to the Mi’kmaq. Netukulimk encompasses the Mi’kmaq way of life including the values, the practices, and the cultural meanings of traveling and living amongst the land and water. Without wasting anything and only taking what was needed, the Mi’kmaq foster a spiritual relationship with all aquatic and terrestrial life that provides them healthy food since time immemorial.

Nova Scotia
Project Type
Over time the traditional and unceded territory of the Mi’kmaq has changed because of industrial development. Today, CMM addresses cumulative effects by building community capacity in undertaking training directly relative to monitoring the past, present, and future effects of industrial developments on their land. Education is at the center of their approach as pedagogical information is easily accessible to community members. Alongside the technical and conceptual aspects of the available training, there is a well-defined goal to bring community members together, including elders and youth, to reinforce the input of their ancestral ecological knowledge into the assessment protocols already in place. By promoting the “Two-Eyed Seeing” approach, they broaden the scientific perspectives of impact assessment by acknowledging the qualities of both Western and Mi’kmaq knowledge systems and the need to balance their influence into those processes. By doing so, and considering the importance of Netukulimk, cumulative effects monitoring is understood as a way of taking values, culture, socio-economic conditions, language, etc. into account beyond solely environmental components.

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