The James Bay Project By: Isabella Dee-Narduzzi November 19, 2018
In 1971, Premier of Quebec, Robert Bourassa, introduced a $400 million project; a new hydroelectric -power development on the coast of James Bay.
We'll have two phases of the project...hopefully to be completed by fall of 1974.
Introducing: The James Bay Project 1971
After completing the first phase, the government of Quebec started the second phase of construction. However, they ran into an issue with the Cree; a First Nations group that lived on the land. Cree chief, James Coon Come, later protested against the development.
Why must you build on our land?
Coon Come's protest was yet to be successful. The government didn't give the Cree back their land, but instead give them a new place to live in what is now called Ouje Bougoumou.
I guess this will do.
Later, in 2002, the government of Quebec cancelled the final plans for the development because of the locals' concern for wildlife, and the development's effects on indigenous communities. The government also signed a landmark agreement, signifying a new relationship with the Cree called "La paix des Braves" which gave them financial compensation, and new-founded peace with the government.
In the end, the Cree were not given back their land. They were simply just given compensation. The event demonstrates the ugly truth for some indigenous peoples in Canada in that they are not given the rights they deserve. Instead, they are towered over by the Canadian government, and compensated for any form of suffering they are put through.