Innu, Doctors, Elected Officials, Local Residents Oppose Uranium Exploration on North Shore of Quebec
One of MiningWatch Canada's fundamental principles is that mining activiities, including exploration should only occur with the support of local communities. Our uranium policy also calls for a moratorium on new uranium projects.
In the last year we have seen the emergence of a consensus between the Innu Nation, elected officials, doctors and community organizers to demand a halt to uranium exploraiton by Terra Ventures Inc. near the town of Sept-Îles, Quebec on the north shore of St. Lawrence River. Unfortunately, to date, the Government of Quebec has not heard these local voices.
- As of January 2009, Terra Ventures had staked nearly 3000 mining claims over 150,500 ha of land for its Lake Kachiwiss Project.
- Construction of an access road and exploration began in 2008.
- 4000 m of test cores have been drilled. Investigation of the exploration sites by local residents have shown poor adherence to environmental stanadards.
- Exploration activities are occuring adjacent to the municipal boundary and within the watershed that provides Sept-Îles with its drinking water.
- Local residents formed Sept-Iles Sans Uranium in 2008 to pressure the Quebec government to place a moratorium on uranium exploraiton in Quebec.
- In March 2009 a creative protest saw 250 snowmobilers ride out to Lake Kachiwiss to make a compelling statement of their concern.
- On December 3, 2009 a year after formally indicating their opposition to the Kachiwiss project, twenty of the town's doctors submited letters of resignation in protest of the continued operations of Terra Ventures.
- On December 7, 2009 Chief Georges-Ernest Grégoire of the Innu community of Takuaikan Uashat mak Mani-Utenam supported the Sept-Îles doctors commenting that "If the doctors are resigning, that says it all. I am in total agreement with them and support their decision."
- On December 10, the Regional Council of Elected Officials decided to support the position of Sept-Iles Sans Uranium against the Lake Kachiwiss Project.
MiningWatch supports and congratulates the efforts of the residents of Sept-Îles, the community of Takuaikan Uashat mak Mani-Utenam, the doctors, and the Regional Council for taking a firm stand to protect their region from the risks of uranium mining.
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