Regarding the Muskrat Falls hydro-development; if this was good for the people then it would be okay to say, “Yes, go ahead with it!” But there are so many things that aren’t good for all people. Why is the government pushing so hard to get it going when everyone knows it’s not good for the people? The population is going to grow; are we prepared for that? What will happen to our young people? There will be more problems for them if lots of people come, more alcohol, more drugs, more problems.
The water will be more polluted and we can’t go back and clean it after it’s done. The animals will die or won’t be good to eat; then what will we hunt or fish? Even the animals on the land will be affected. Everyone will feel the consequences and challenges—the Innu, the youth and everyone. If this goes ahead there are so many things wrong with it. We should take more time, do more research, and find solutions to these problems before we go ahead with it.
If these questions were answered people would feel better about supporting it, because it would be good for the people. Churchill Falls went ahead without consultation and we have seen what happened there. It polluted the water; we can’t really fish from that river now because of the mercury. It polluted the lake; how many of you remember when there used to be seals near the mouth of the river? Now they are far out. It destroyed some very important burial grounds. It made a mess of things here for everyone. I’m afraid the same thing will happen if this new dam goes ahead.
A lot of people will be affected if the Lower Churchill project happens. I understand people want jobs, but there are other kinds of jobs that would help the community rather than hurt the community. I understand people need money to buy food, things for their children and to pay the bills, but I’m concerned that the land and the river will be over-damaged. It is a very high price to pay and there’s no going back once it’s done. We need to be very sure we’ve thought through all these things. Are you sure this is good for all people?