Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe of Plymouth, MA calls on governors to reject Canadian hydro

Submitted by the North American Megadam Resistance Alliance (NAMRA)

August 17, 2020

The Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe today announced it is joining with the Penobscot and Innu Nation in opposing the transmission corridor for hydroelectricity from Canada to Boston. In a letter the Herring Pond Tribe calls on Governor Charlie Baker and Governor Janet Mills in Maine to reject imports of Canadian hydroelectricity because they cause environmental injustices in “Indigenous communities whose homelands and sacred places are ravaged by dams, flooding, [and] transmission corridors….” 

Massachusetts energy policy does not consider the negative impacts of Canada’s hydroelectricity on Indigenous and frontline communities.  In 2018, the Baker Administration approved 20-year contracts to import more hydroelectricity from the Canadian power company Hydro-Quebec, calling it clean energy. Most of Hydro-Quebec’s dams were built on the ancestral lands of Indigenous people without prior consent and new megadams are under construction for export to Massachusetts.  The New England Clean Energy Connect (NECEC) hydropower corridor will deliver the power to Boston and cut through 145 miles of Maine wilderness A majority of Maine residents oppose NECEC. A similar corridor to New York City is opposed by a wide range of organizations.

Since 2017, Indigenous people who suffer from Canadian hydropower development have spoken at the National Day of Mourning in Plymouth, Massachusetts on the U.S. Thanksgiving holiday as a reminder of the impact of colonialism on Native people. Amy Norman an Inuk woman whose ancestral territory is poisoned spoke in 2019 about how hydropower is not clean energy but destroys lands and waters.

Herring Pond Tribe Chairlady Melissa (Harding) Ferretti stated, “We are honored to stand with the Penobscot and Innu Nations in opposing projects that are destructive to the environment and to Indigenous homelands.  As Indigenous peoples, it is our responsibility to protect all that is sacred – including land, water, and wildlife – for the wellbeing of future generations.” 

For more information: www.herringpondtribe.org 

Contact: Melissa Ferretti, Chairlady/President, Herring Pond Wampanoag Tribe, Inc. Tel. 508.304.5023  Melissaferretti@hotmail.com