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Northvolt project in Monteregie |  The Mohawks of Kahnawake sue Quebec and Ottawa

Northvolt project in Monteregie | The Mohawks of Kahnawake sue Quebec and Ottawa

The Mohawk First Nation of Kahnawake is taking legal action against the governments of Quebec and Canada, accusing it of not consulting with them about the Northvolt battery cell plant project, in Montérégie.


The Mohawk Council of Kahnawake is asking Quebec's Superior Court to declare that Quebec and Ottawa violated their constitutional obligation to consult First Nations by funding the project and, in Quebec's case specifically, by allowing the destruction of wetlands, he noted. In a press release on Tuesday.

The council is also challenging Quebec's legislation regulating work on wetlands, arguing it does not take into account Indigenous rights.

“Given the importance of wetlands to our environment and their role in mitigating the effects of climate change, we fully support the decision to take this legal action,” Benjamin Green Stacey, director of the council’s Office of Environmental Protection, said in press statements. launch.

“Failure to mitigate the impacts of this construction will result in the senseless loss of many endangered species in the region,” he added.

The approach comes as the injection application filed by the Quebec Environmental Law Center (CQDE) is also being filed in Superior Court, which asks that preparatory work begun earlier this month be halted “with immediate effect” by Northvolt.

The CQDE says it doubts that the ministerial authorization allowing the Swedish multinational to proceed with this work has been granted in accordance with the rules of the art by the Legault government.

The hearing on the matter began Wednesday morning in a Montreal court.

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CQDE also says it supports the Mohawk Council of Kahnawake's request, its attorney, Mark Pichai, announced on the sidelines of the hearing.

“This is another sign to us that public participation is insufficient,” he said. Stakeholders must be consulted, and they must be able to have their say on such a large-scale project. »

Sabotage acts were also carried out In recent days on Northvault land, trying to prevent the planned felling of about 14,000 trees.

– With Julien Arsenault