For centuries, the
native Cree people of northern Quebec subsisted largely on hunting, fishing and trapping. But the coming of
huge hydroelectric projects in James
Bay 40 years ago changed
that way of life.
hydroelectric dams are seen as one of the most environmentally friendly energy
damming rivers and redirecting their flow isn’t benign. Fish habitat is
harmed. Mercury is released into the environment. And the projects themselves
can even release greenhouse gases.
Just two decades ago, a power purchase from Hydro-Quebec would raise significant opposition over social and environmental issues. But today – with climate change in the picture – the deal has faced almost no opposition.
Many of Vermont’s villages and towns
were built around water power, and many of the small dams that produced that
power still exist. But few of
the old dams have been revived. Critics have blamed the state Agency of Natural
Resources for the holdup. Officials say that’s beginning to change.
Results are in from the re-appraisal of the eight
Vermont hydroelectric dams
owned by Canadian energy company TransCanada. Officials say the new suggested values could
mean higher tax revenues for towns that host TransCanada property. They could
also mean more tax disputes.