Let's Save Big Falls Petition
  • Petitioning The Honourable Jim Bradley

This petition will be delivered to:

Minister of the Environment
The Honourable Jim Bradley

Let's Save Big Falls Petition

    1. Petition by

      Let's Save Big Falls


In the traditional territory of the NamekosipiiwAnishinaape people, we are struggling to defend our historic migratory canoe routes. Each year, our small community follows the water trails of our ancestors up and down the Trout Lake River. Our women, especially the young women, will share their tremendous knowledge and teachings about water as they undertake their work to save Big Falls. (Kaaren Dannenmann)


In 2005, the Ministry of Natural Resources, without consulting First Nations or any other people, contracted Hatch Energy to conduct a survey of Ontario rivers that would be suitable for hydroelectric development. When the survey was concluded, information was posted publicly and bids were solicited for hydro development, again, with no consultation with First Natins or any other people.

The Trout Lake River, with no consultation with the people whose traditional land this is, was one of the rivers selected for hydro development -- three sites on the river were identified. Big Falls was the most convenient site because it is road and power line accessible. On June 13, 2007, MNR announced that is approved, without consulting the NamekosipiiwAnishinaapek, Horizon Hydro Inc.'s proposal to develop a 3.2-MW hydropower project at Big Falls.

The First Nation people of Trout Lake, the NamekosipiiwAnishinaapek, have opposed these plans from the first. This river has been their main annual migratory route and Big Falls is of huge cultural significance. Today, it is a center of camping, canoeing, traditional education, feasting, sweat lodge and other ceremonial activities. It is also an important recreational and economic site for other residents of the area.

We, the undersigned, because of the Ontario Ministry of Natural Resources has been the impetus of these plans right from the beginning, want the OMNR to withdraw all approvals to the Hydro-electric plans at Big Falls. We want the OMNR to protect Big Falls and the whole Trout Lake River from any development plans.

Recent signatures


    1. Reached 750 signatures
    2. Thank you so much for your support!

      Our petition just went from 260 signatures to 620 in one week! Thank you so much for your support! Help us go viral by sharing this petition on Twitter with the hash tag #LetsSaveBigFalls

    3. Reached 500 signatures
    4. It's not over yet!

      We have received word from MPP David Orazietti. His response to our petition continues to ignore the lack of consultation. Luckily, it is not within his power to yay or nay the hydro dam project, and he has directed that we speak with Minister of the Environment, Jim Bradley. Help us add even more names to our petition by sharing this with your communities.
      Chi Miigwetch

    5. Over 200!

      Thank you everyone for signing our petition, which has been sent with over 200 signatures! Please continue to share this petition with your friends and colleagues to show continued support for SAVE BIG FALLS!!!

    6. Reached 200 signatures
    7. 116 Petition Signatures to Save Big Falls from the Trout Forest Music Fest

      Supporters of Let's Save Big Falls recently collected 116 petition signatures at the Trout Forest Music Festival in Otahwaka Powitek (Ear Falls, Ontario) this past weekend. Being present during this festival which is located across from another hydroelectric damn held a special significance. "The early French fur traders' name for the falls was Portage D'Oreille, or literally speaking, "carrying place of the ear". Upper Ear Falls, about 1.5 miles upstream, was drowned out when the lake level was raised some 16 feet (4.9 m) when the power dam came into operation, and nothing of it remains today except dangerous ripple rapids with a very strong current."

    8. Reached 25 signatures
    9. Decision-maker Allan Willcocks responds:

      Allan Willcocks

      thank you for your note

    10. Reached 10 signatures


    Reasons for signing

    • Victoria King WINNIPEG, CANADA
      • 14 days ago

      Our water is most important.

    • Riel Olsen THUNDER BAY, ON, CANADA
      • 3 months ago

      Trout Lake is my home.

    • John Merasty PRINCE ALBERT, CANADA
      • 4 months ago

      1st I value consultation. Second if the Indians were the sole beneficiaries I would agree to the project. The Indians were not consulted and they will lose their heritage sites and their culture. This is war and we must fight.

    • Clayton Thomas-Muller OTTAWA, CANADA
      • 4 months ago

      Because I have some very good relatives from this region that depend on this sacred land for life

    • Ashley Norton REGINA, CANADA
      • 4 months ago

      Beautiful lands, water and sacred to Indigenous peoples.


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