APTN National News, Jan 20, 2015
CROSS LAKE, Man. – Manitoba Premier Greg Selinger apologized to a northern Aboriginal community Tuesday for damage caused by a hydro-electric dam.
Selinger agreed to visit Cross Lake First Nation following a six-week occupation of the Jenpeg generating station last fall.
Protesters had said they wouldn’t leave the grounds of the dam until they received a personal apology from the premier. They say the hydro developments affected hunting, fishing, trapping and water quality. It also led to flooding and loss of cultural identity.
The occupation ended in November with an agreement to address revenue-sharing, a shoreline cleanup and help with residential electricity bills that hover around $600 a month in the winter.
During the occupation, Selinger was sympathetic and said protesters have some long-standing concerns that need to be addressed.
Jenpeg is about 525 kilometres north of Winnipeg and is key in Manitoba Hydro’s northern electricity generation.
Selinger said affects of the dam were not studied fully in the past.