In 1496 John Cabot traveled what is now called Newfoundland and Cape Breton and claimed the lands on behalf of Britain. Tony Seed looks at the devastation this “discovery” wrought upon Mi’kmaq and Beothuk populations and the invalidity of the doctrine of discovery and the colonizers’ claims of dominion.
The Canada Newfoundland Offshore Petroleum Board (CNLOPB) has released information on oil and gas bids detailing lease areas available for 2018 – and these areas directly overlap a large fisheries closure announced in December by the Department of Fisheries and Oceans.
This weekend we feature In the shadow of the dam, APTN’s brand new and excellent documentary on the indigenous resistance to the Muskrat Falls project in Labrador. You can’t condemn environmental racism and violation of Indigenous rights in Nova Scotia, and remain silent on what’s happening in Labrador right now. It’s that simple.
Roberta Benefiel, founding director of Grand Riverkeeper, Labrador, is visiting Nova Scotia to remind us that for the people who live there Muskrat Falls is an environmental disaster that will poison traditional food sources and flood indigenous lands. She believes that through the Maritime Link this is Nova Scotia issue as well. “There may not be that many of us, but people do live here. We need to put a face to these people,” Benefiel tells the Nova Scotia Advocate.
The Muskrat Falls development may be far away in Labrador, but it is very much Nova Scotia’s business. That was the message delivered by speakers at a news conference held outside the Emera / Nova Scotia Power offices on Lower Water Street in downtown Halifax this morning. “What we are seeing is massive destruction and genocide for profit. The crown corporation Nalcor is giving itself the legal authority to commit genocide using water as a vehicle for devastation. Once they drown the landscape, methylmercury poisoning is inevitable. We are talking mass genocide to all vegetation, medicines and all living species. Lives will be lost,” said Michelle Paul.
The Muskrat Falls project, future source for so-called green electricity for Nova Scotia, is in fact a man-made environmental disaster that has few equals. Meanwhile journalists who report on protests are muzzled, and land defenders continue to be thrown in jail. Progressive politicians in Nova Scotia prefer to look the other way, as if it isn’t our business.
The Muskrat Falls power generating project is destroying the way of life of Innu and Inuit, and they’re fighting back. Very few reporters tell their story. One of those few is Justin Brake of the Independent. He needs our support.
This weekend’s documentary follows a group of women from Nova Scotia as they travel to the site of the new hydroelectric installation at Muskrat Falls in Labrador. With Labradorian women as their guides, the Nova Scotians come to understand the heavy toll this dam is taking on the local environment, economy, and social fabric.
Something very much out of the ordinary is happening in Newfoundland and Labrador.