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by Christina Moreau category: Environment
Kipawa Lake is located along the Ontario/Quebec border North of Ottawa and East of North Bay. It is the headwaters for Lake Temiscaming as well as the Ottawa River. It is a vast body of water with over 900 km of natural shoreline. A moratorium on development was imposed in the 1980s allowing Kipawa to remain a pristine wilderness area with road access within a one day drive of the GTA, Ottawa, Montreal and other major centers.
Tourists travel from all over the world to enjoy the beauty and serenity of this region, to hunt, fish, canoe, kayak and vacation. The land has a rich cultural and historical significance to the local Algonquin First Nations who still inhabit the region and rely on hunting and fishing. Unfortunately, this could all change and soon, plans are in place to lift the moratorium and allow development on Kipawa’s shores that will irreversibly and forever destroy this natural paradise. Proposed development includes a rare earth mine project by Matamec Explorations Inc.
No rare earth element mine has operated in the world without significant damage to the environment and human health. Canada’s Environmental Laws while more stringent than many other countries were not written with this type of project in mind. Should this project be allowed to proceed it will be the first of its kind in Canada and our environmental laws are not sufficient to protect this vulnerable wilderness area. Rare earth mining has the ability to release radioactive isotopes, heavy metals and other contaminants that would not only be detrimental to the health of the environment, aquatic and terrestrial organisms but that would also render the water unsafe to drink, the wild plants, fish and wild game unsafe to eat and the air unsafe to breathe. The health effects on the local population would be many including chronic illness and elevated cancer rates.
Allowing industrial development on Kipawa Lake will provide a short term economic gain while protecting the region from development will allow Canadians to experience the natural beauty of this region, escape from the city to reconnect with nature and allow First Nations to continue their traditional way of life for generations to come – this is priceless. Time is running out but it is not too late. We must act fast to save Kipawa Lake.
You can help, please take 30 seconds of your time to support this thunderclap and sign the online petition.
Then visit us on facebook https://www.facebook.com/SaveKipawaLake
I've been visiting Kipawa lake for 26 years. It is the most pristine, untouched lake I have ever visited. I have a background in aquatic sciences and I have carried out research on the lake that shows just how truly pristine it is. Kipawa Lake is a natural paradise, it would be a great injustice to see it destroyed for short term economic gain.