In this issue we look at what people thought about future wind power projects proposed by Canadian Wind Energy Association, to test opinion in favour of wind power projects to be built in Eeyou Istchee rather than damming up rivers.

Roger Orr of Nemaska says wind power and other sources of energy are “the way to go these days. The world is starting to look at eco-safe alternatives of retrieving energy. If there’s another way of retrieving energy other than damming rivers then I truly believe that’s what should be done, the world will benefit. If we as Cree people promote these eco-safe alternatives, we are truly promoting our Cree way of life with a modern twist. The Rupert River diversion should be on hold while we look into these alternatives.”

Jimmy Bearskin,Chisasibi: “They would have to put up the wind power propellers near the shores of the Bay where the wind is strongest. This is where the geese come for their feeding grounds on their way up north. I don’t know much about this issue. When Quebec announced the Hydro Project, the Crees had to do a lot of thinking before any decisions were made. I think we are in this stage right now. But all I heard is wind power energy is better than damming rivers.” Harry Snowboy, Chisasibi: “I prefer wind power rather than destroying what we have. When you destroy land you destroy the future and the future for the kids. Wind power is an alternative wind power energy source; we should take advantage of that. We as native people should know better than to destroy what was given to us. Wind power has proven itself in other countries, what you flood you can never get back.”

Bertie Wapachee, Nemaska: “I prefer alternative sources of energy all the time. Our nation has never taken the opportunity to not only look at the alternatives but options that are much safer and viable to our future. We have to think about our children and those that are still willing to go out on the land. The agreements we have today only promote greed and materialistic thinking. I hope that alternative sources of energy will save Rupert’s River and other rivers in the Cree territory.”

James Diamond, Waskaganish: “Northern Quebec looks very good for wind energy potential. There is also the fact that it’s a very sparsely populated area. But those things will be very huge if they ever go major with the wind energy project. James Bay is a very good location and it doesn’t pollute the environment. It’s an excellent place for wind energy and the infrastructure is already there.”