Community Coalition Against Mining Uranium (CCAMU)
Citizens’ Inquiry on the Impacts of the Uranium Cycle
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A Submission

by Michele Bourque

AHNEE - Hello

My name is Michele Bourque. I am Ojibway. My family is from a community in southern Ontario called Aamjiwnaang First Nation. Our backyard is Sarnia's chemical valley.

I am not an activist or a scientist but I know one thing for sure. If we do damage to Mother Earth, it is not us but our future generations who will suffer the consequences of these poor choices. Please - let us learn from our past experiences. All you need to do is go to Sarnia's Chemical Valley to learn about Canada's toxic shame. Let us learn from this experience. Jobs are important but not at the expense of the environment. Without water, air, wind and fire, we all will perish as a people.

At this time, I live and work in Ottawa, Ontario. As an Aboriginal person, I know one thing for sure - if we do damage to Mother Earth it is not she who will die, it is our future generations who will suffer the consequences of your poor choices. Take it from me, I can say that poor decisions and poor choices end up with suffering, pain and poor results.

The effects of this uranium mining will outlast any and all of us. The effects will remain with Mother Earth for a much longer time than any of us will ever be around to realize what a poor choice we made. Then it will be too late.

I understand that the proposed exploration is at the headwaters of the Mississippi River watershed in Eastern Ontario. It is also my understanding that this watershed provides drinking water to hundreds of thousands of people living in the Capital of Canada including the federal politicians. Do you really want to learn what it is like to be without potable drinking water? Then I suggest you go visit some of the northern First Nations communities to get a first hand experience of no drinking water. I personally don't want to live in a community without drinking water.

Finally, Sharbot Lake is on traditional Algonquin territory, and even if I am not Algonquin, I still respect the traditional territory of the Algonquin Nation. To my understanding, this land has never been surrendered or sold to the Crown. How would you like it if I started digging a whole on Parliament Hill or on your property next to your backyard deck. What do you think would happen? Settle with the Aboriginal people before you go about disturbing their land.

As a concerned citizen, my request is that this project be stopped immediately - at least until the government and explorers can prove beyond a reasonable doubt that this is a good thing for everyone in Ontario and Quebec today AND for the future generations to come. I am certain that the Elders would have something to say about this - we should ask them for their guidance.

In closing, it is the Creator who will judge our actions.