Sunday, April 23rd, 2017
Pessamit Innu First Nation acknowledges New Hampshire citizens’ commitment in the fight against the Northern Pass Project generating social and environmental impacts for the benefit of third parties located beyond the State limits.
There is a strong parallel between the forced migration imposed to the Pessamit community and the Northern Pass Project situation. Quebec and Hydro-Quebec unlawfully appropriated a territory that was the heart of our culture for thousands of years. They have ravaged our social harmony and rendered it destitute. This forced migration is a key piece of a cultural genocide orchestrated to produce Hydro-Quebec so called ‘’green energy’’.
Pessamit has paid and continues to pay a totally unfair price for the development of Hydro-Quebec. Hydro-Quebec is now requesting New Hampshire citizens to be dispossessed of the most valuable part of their environment at the Quebec State own society’s profit. Pessamit can testify the long term consequences this eviction entails.
There are 13 hydroelectric power stations located and operated illegitimately in our Nitassinan (traditional territory). These stations represent 29% of Hydro-Quebec’s total installed production capacity. They were built without impact assessment, without the agreement of Pessamit and without compensation. Twenty-nine percent of the electricity that Hydro-Quebec intends to run through the proposed Northern Pass Project has been usurped to Pessamit. How is it possible to trade internationally stolen energy?
Pessamit is also particularly concerned about the use of Bersimis power stations on the Betsiamites River to supply New England market. These stations are designed to meet the peaking needs of Hydro-Quebec’s network. Hydro-Quebec’s hydraulic management of the Betsiamites River has already a devastating impact on the salmon population. Massive electricity importation by New England states will accelerate the destruction of the iconic Betsiamites River. In this regard, a significant part of the electricity that Hydro-Quebec intends to sell to New England State is failing to comply with Quebec environmental legislation, to Canadian Constitution, and to two international agreements signed by United States and Canada regarding salmon conservation. Obviously, Hydro-Quebec does not need to comply with Laws and international agreements in the name of increasing their benefits. This outrageous non-compliance with laws and international conventions by a Quebec State own corporation occurs to the detriment of Aboriginal peoples.
Facing the threat of the Northern Pass Project, Pessamit forcefully denounce the indefensible privileges that Hydro-Quebec is now trying to acquire from the New Hampshire population.
With our whole hearted support,
Chief René Simon,
Pessamit Innu First Nation