(Lax Kw’alaams Band)
#47: Garry Reece
Mayor, Lax Kw’alaams Band
Why he matters: Could make or break LNG
Garry Reece is the guy standing in the way of—or, potentially, facilitating—the creation of a multibillion-dollar industry. He leads the Lax Kw’alaams First Nations Band on B.C.’s northwest coast, which in September filed a claim to aboriginal title on land where Malaysian energy company Petronas plans to build a liquefied natural gas terminal. Earlier, the band rejected an impact-and-benefits agreement worth $1.1 billion over 40 years from Petronas. Reece’s objection is not to LNG exports in principle, but rather to the project’s location near an important salmon-rearing habitat. That’s why Petronas still holds out hope.