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B.C. Premier Christy Clark's trip to Britain to promote the Great Bear Rainforest, as crews clean up a fuel spill off the coast, prompted contrasting reactions on social media

British Columbia Premier Christy Clark talks about the Great Bear Rainforest (Forest Management) Act during a milestone announcement at the Legislative Library at the legislature in Victoria, B.C., Tuesday, March 1, 2016. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad HipolitoThe Canadian Press

From right to left: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge; Prince William; and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark listen to a conservation officer during a tour of the Great Bear Rainforest in Bella Bella, B.C., during William and Catherine's visit to the province in September.

From right to left: Catherine, Duchess of Cambridge; Prince William; and British Columbia Premier Christy Clark listen to a conservation officer during a tour of the Great Bear Rainforest in Bella Bella, B.C., during William and Catherine’s visit to the province in September.

Chris Wattie/Reuters

British Columbia's premier travelled to London's Buckingham Palace this week for an event to promote the Great Bear Rainforest with the Queen. The expansive area on B.C.'s central coast was the focus of a decades-long battle to protect it from development that culminated in a historic agreement signed by the provincial government earlier this year. It was also added to the Queen's Commonwealth Canopy during a visit in September by Prince William and his wife, Catherine, the Duchess of Cambridge.

But at the same time Premier Christy Clark was in the United Kingdom celebrating the province's role in protecting the area, crews continued to clean up a fuel spill caused when a tugboat ran aground and sank last month off the community of Bella Bella, leaking more than 107,000 litres of diesel and 2,240 litres of engine oils into the Seaforth Channel. It took 33 days to remove the stricken vessel from the reef and the nearby Heiltsuk First Nation has warned of lasting environmental damage.

Read more: Clark promotes Great Bear Rainforest in U.K. while First Nations battle oil spill

For subscribers: As premier visits Buckingham Palace, B.C.'s forest industry faces numerous challenges

Related: Duke and Duchess given royal welcome at B.C.'s Great Bear Rainforest

The contrast between the two events was mirrored with conflicting reactions in First Nations communities involved in the Great Bear announcement – all of which played out on social media.

The Royal Family's official account marked the trip by congratulating the agreement to protect the Great Bear Rainforest:

The congratulatory tone was shared by Dallas Smith, who signed the agreement on behalf of the Nanwakolas Tribal Council and has since become a candidate for Ms. Clark's Liberals in next spring's provincial election, and Liberal strategist Michele Cadario.

But Jess Housty, who is the Heiltsuk First Nations' incident commander for the tug spill, pointed out her community is still dealing with the disaster. The tug has finally been raised out of the water — a task that took more than a month — but the cleanup continues.

Others piled on along the same lines.