The Uashaunnuat (Innu Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam) have filed a motion for an interlocutory injunction against Hydro Quebec’s La Romaine hydroelectric project, stating that the proposed electric transmission lines run through the heart of traditional lands of the Uashaunnuat and Innu traditionnal families.
Soon after the announcement of the Romaine hydroelectric complex, Uashaunnuat opposed the construction of the project, including the location of its transmission lines. In June 2009, the Uashaunnuat, the Innu traditional families and the political body representing 3,800 Innu Takuaikan Uashat Mak Mani-Utenam (ITUM) filed a motion for a permanent injunction with the Quebec Superior Court. “We affirm our complete sovereignty over our traditional lands and oppose any development without our consent,” said Chief Georges-Ernest Grégoire.
The Romaine hydroelectric complex involves the construction of four generating stations with an average annual output of 8 TWh. Construction began in 2009 and will run to 2020, with the first generating station (Romaine-2) scheduled for commissioning in late 2014. Hydro-Québec estimates that spending directly related to construction, in contracts and purchases of goods and services, will amount to $3.5B.
This project presently constitutes the largest construction undertaking in Canada.