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Feds say yes to Eastmain project


A federal environmental review panel recommends that Quebec’s Eastmain 1A-Rupert hydroelectric project go ahead, but they say the project should be monitored by an independent body that includes Nunavut, and aboriginal groups.

”It would be imperative for the federal government to implement a large-scale research and monitoring program for the James Bay and Hudson Bay ecosystems,” said the panel.

That’s a small victory for Inuit from Makivik Corporation and the Nunavut Hudson Bay Inter-Agency Working Group, or Nunavuummi Tasiujarjuamiuguqatigiit Katujiqatigiingit, who called for this kind of inter-jurisdictional watchdog in their presentations to the federal review panel this spring.

The panel’s assessment is largely positive about the project, which would divert two rivers, and lead to new dams, reservoirs, a spillway, dikes, powerhouses, generating stations, power lines, and other structures in the James Bay region.

The Department of Fisheries and Oceans and Transport Canada will now review the panel’s report and submit its response to cabinet for approval. The response will then be made public.

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