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Related Projects

Muskrat Falls Labrador

Muskrat Falls (Labrador)

The Helios Centre has been an active participant in the debates surrounding the Muskrat Falls Project (the Lower Churchill Project) in Labrador (NL) since 2012 and its impacts on the electric system in Labrador.

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The Eastmain 1A/Rupert Diversion Project

The Eastmain 1A/Rupert Diversion Project

In 2005 and 2006, the Centre was involved in the environmental assessment of Hydro-Québec’s controversial Eastmain 1A/Rupert Diversion project, first as a consultant to the federal panel, and later as an expert engaged by the three Cree communities directly affected by the project (Chisasibi, Nemaska and Waskaganish). While the joint review panel did support the project, which ultimately was constructed, it was remarkable in that one of the three members dissented, finding that the environmental and social harms the project would cause were not justified by its economic benefits.

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Low-Impact Hydropower

On behalf of the Helios Centre, Philip Raphals has acted as an advisor to the governing board of the Low Impact Hydropower Institute since 2000, and currently serves as chair of its Renewable Markets Advisory Panel. The Low Impact Hydropower Institute (LIHI) is a US non-profit organization created out of a collaboration between American Rivers, a river conservation organization, and Green Mountain Energy Resources, an electricity marketer. It has published detailed, science-based criteria for identifying hydro projects which are low-impact, based on their operations.

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Great Whale River

The Great Whale Project

The societal debates around the Great Whale Project, a 3,000-MW installation proposed by Hydro-Québec for the Great Whale River, bordering the Cree and Inuit territories in Northern Quebec, in a sense paved the way for the creation of the Helios Centre. In the early 1990s, Executive Director Philip Raphals acted as Deputy Scientific Coordinator of the body created to carry out a joint environmental assessment of this project. The multi-disciplinary team led by Dr. Michel Bouchard developed a unique crosscutting roadmap (the “Guidelines”) for the assessment. The project was withdrawn by the government after the Crown Corporation failed to provide the information required by the panels.

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