Hydro-Quebec, supplier of the hydroelectricity for the corridor, is being pursued for a $4 billion debt by the Innu Nation of Labrador for “illegally taking” their land in 1969 to build the Churchill Falls hydroelectric dam. Fifty percent of Hydro-Quebec’s electricity is not its’ to sell, claim the Innu Nation of Labrador and First Nations of Pessamit (Innu), Wemotaci (Atikamekw), Pikogan, Lac Simon and Kitcisakik (Anishnabeg) while the Innus of Uashat mak Mani-Uteman are suing for $1.5 billion for stolen lands.
Hydro-Quebec’s influence peddling in Maine includes $8.3 million opposing the Maine voter referendum, annual expenditures by the Quebec Government to influence politicians, regulators and non-profits using a subsidiary (HQUS) that describes itself as a foreign principal supervised, owned, directed, controlled, financed and subsidized by the Quebec Government. The Government tries to influence research and policy in the U.S. and Canada: Blue Deserts documents the suppression of scientific research exposing Hydro-Quebec’s devastating environmental impacts and recent grants to U.S. academic institutions are aimed at promoting megadam exports.
While the Quebec Government is peddling its influence and spending millions to lobby, some Indigenous communities from whom the electricity is stolen lack electricity and running water while Hydro-Quebec claims it shares its profits fairly. There’s only one conclusion here: this is not a clean energy project but an international human rights and environmental crime.
By Meg Sheehan, Coordinator, North American Megadam Resistance Alliance