WERU Maine Currents: CMP Corridor Draws Opposition from Across the Political Spectrum

Click here to listen to the recent WERU Maine Currents show which aired on 01/07/2020 featuring audio from the 2019 Northeast U.S. Speakers Tour as well as the voices of individuals from across Maine calling in to express their feelings, statements and opinions on this issue.

It’s time for Climate Bonds Initiative to scrap its hydro certification scheme (commentary) by Josh Klemm

Click here for the full article.

While the world urgently needs to embrace financial incentives for climate solutions, these solutions must be just, fair, and equitable. The greenwashing surrounding hydropower has led to the Climate Bonds Initiative, an organization focused on accelerating the transition to a low carbon economy, to embrace plans to offer worldwide funding for hydropower.

This has triggered 276 civil organizations from 77 countries around the world to launch a campaign aimed at persuading the CBI to “abandon its misguided attempt to greenwash hydropower. Critics point out the various social, environmental, and economic issues associated with megadams and how these facilities are false solutions to the climate crisis.

Media Coverage and Press Releases from the 2019 Northeast U.S. Speakers Tour

Media Coverage:

The Bangor Daily News – Canadian tribal members tour Maine to oppose CMP corridor as referendum bid rams up Caitlin Andrews

Went 2 The Bridge – Not Clean, Not Green: Proposed CMP Corridor/NECEC An Environmental Disaster From Beginning to End -Lisa Savage

Kingston Reporter – National Day of Mourning

Press Releases:

Sierra Club – New York City Hosts Panel Discussions Amidst Mayor’s Support for More Canadian Hydro Power

Sierra Club – Massachusetts Events Cover Impacts of Canadian Hydropower on Environment, Communities 

Sierra Club – Hydro-Quebec megadams and Central Maine Power corridor subject of Maine Events

Impacts of Hydro-Quebec’s megadams on Pessamit Cree lands

In 2016, the Pessamit First Nation filed a motion to intervene in the regulatory proceedings involving the Northern Pass transmission corridor proposed for New Hampshire in the U.S. Eventually, the state’s highest court denied permission for the corridor.

The Pessamit legal filing, made under oath in a legal proceeding, provides an interesting insight into how Hydro-Quebec exploits land and water for its destructive, industrial scale megadam operations.

2019 Megadams = Megadamge Tour Featured on Bangor Daily News

The 2019 Northeast U.S. Speaking Tour has been featured in the Bangor Daily News. The article can be found here. Our resistance movement continues to grow, but we still need your support.

Amy Norman says it best, “Mainers will be tied to the dams because of the line’s route through the state, even though energy will be sold regionally. That makes you complicit,” she said. “That makes you complicit in the cultural genocide of my people.”

Letter delivered to Governor Janet Mills by NAMRA

On 11/25/2019, NAMRA and allies delivered this letter to the office of Governor Janet Mills at the Maine Statehouse. Governor Mills, projects like New England Clean Energy Connect will have detrimental effects on the environment and will carry electricity produced by megadams that violate human rights, damage the environment, and release significant quantities of greenhouse gases into the atmosphere. Large-scale hydro should not be considered in the just transition to clean energy.

‘Projects of Death’: Impacts of hydro dams on environment, Indigenous communities highlighted at Winnipeg conference

Hundreds of individuals, dam resisters, water protectors, and activists gathered at the Wa Ni Ska Tan Conference during the weekend of November 8, 2019, to discuss the devastating social and environmental impacts of large hydro dams.

For more information, click here.

Dams and Deforestation

When discussing the greenhouse gas impact of megadams such as Muskrat Falls, one area that is often overlooked is the amounts of forests, peatlands, and other carbon-sequestering ecosystems that must be flooded and/or cleared to create the reservoirs necessary to generate this power. Canada’s boreal forests and peatlands sequester massive amounts of carbon dioxide, in fact, according to the Natural Resources Defence Council, each year, clearcutting across the boreal forest releases more than 26 million metric tons of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere.

Labradorian Eldred Davis stands beside just one of many piles of rotting wood chopped down to create the reservoir for the Muskrat Falls Hydroelectric Project.
Photo Courtesy: Roberta Frampton Benefiel

In addition to the massive amounts of carbon dioxide and methane released from the creation of reservoirs, pristine wildlife habitat and culturally important lands for Indigenous communities are often destroyed. Muskrat Falls, for example, has marked a sacred place for the Innu and their ancestors for thousands of years and it was flooded without the tribe’s free, prior or informed consent.

Hydro-Quebec’s five largest reservoirs alone have flooded over 7,545 square miles of forests, bogs, rivers, and other ecosystems across the province. The crown corporations currently owns 27 reservoirs.

As electricity demand from the United States increases, more dams and transmission corridors will likely have to be constructed. This will result in greater amounts of deforestation and flooding across precious environments that are disappearing at a disturbing rate. This will only serve to further increase greenhouse gas emissions, destroy important wildlife habitat and further displace front-line communities.

Hydropower has no place in the future of clean electricity generation and should not be advertised as such. Instead, the focus must turn to implementing local clean electricity production and reducing overall electricity demand.

Pimicikamak And Manitoba Hydro Start Fresh After 40 Years Of Turmoil

In 2014, protests and occupation of Manitoba’s Jenpeg Dam on Pimicikamak territory by Pimicikamak people changed the relationship between Manitoba Hydro and this First Nations tribe.

The construction of the Jenpeg Dam and the monetization of the Nelson River violated Pimicikamak sovereignty and threatened thousand-year-old food webs. As Noretta Miswaggon, a Cree teacher and communications officer for Pimicikamak Okimawin, the nation’s self-government stated, “When Hydro built the dam, it severed our connection to the land.” The 2014 occupation of the Jenpeg Generating Station transformed the Pimicikamak’s relationship with Manitoba Hydro.

This occupation significantly changed the dynamic between Manitoba Hydro and the Pimicikamak people and showed Manitoba Hydro that First Nations people can kick them out anytime they want. Not only have these actions brought an official apology from Manitoba Hydro and the provincial government, but they have also spurred the crown corporation to fund millions of dollars of community programs for the Pimicikamak.

Read more about this story here.

Join the MegaDams Resistance in St. John, New Brunswick on Sept. 9, 2019

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2nd Annual

International Protest Against Canadian Hydro

Join our rally at the Conference of Northeastern Governors & Eastern Canadian Premiers

Mon. Sept. 9 at 9 a.m. ATLANTIC TIME

Saint John Trade & Convention Centre, One Market Square, Saint John, New Brunswick E2L 4Z6, Canada

Why: The Canadian hydropower industry wants to double the amount of hydropower exported to the Northeast U.S. Northeast U.S. Governors are buying it!  

They ignore destruction caused by megadams  & transmission corridors — cultural genocide of Indigenous communities & environmental, economic & social damage.

Bring the megadams=megadamage message to them!

Indigenous community members who have been leading the Muskrat Falls resistance in Labrador, Canada will be attending. We will bring their voices to the Premiers and Governors – inside and outside the conference!

Encampment and solidarity building on Sunday, Sept. 8. Email for more information:

Supporters of this event: Labrador Land Protectors, United American Indians of New England, Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, Sierra Club, Sierra Club Canada Foundation, North American Megadam Resistance Alliance, Global Justice Ecology Project, Biofuelwatch, New Communities Project, Say NO to NECEC  (Maine), Jones River Watershed Association, New York Environmental Law & Justice Project, 350 Maine, RESTORE: The North Woods, Toxics Action Center

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Twitter @NAMRA91918140