Some JFAAP members attended this tour. Ten years ago, a report surfaced that showed two girls were being born for every boy in Aamjiwnaang First Nation due to toxic chemicals emanating from industry in Chemical Valley. The news made international headlines and shamed the Canadian government. Since that time, more refineries have been built, more pipelines have spilled, and the community continues to be poisoned day after day, week after week, year after year.
The Aamjiwnaang has fought back. Grassroots members have done speaking tours, petitions, lawsuits, rallies, blockades, scientific testing, and built networks of supporters to help share the story of what is happening to our lands, and our people.
The Aamjiwnaang First Nation asked everyone to experience for one day what many of them experience their lives. There are over 50 petrochemical plants. We witnessed the pollution with our own eyes, ears, noses, and feel what it has done to our land and their people.
Chemical Valley is the climate and pollution crisis of Southern Ontario. It is where fracked gas is processed. It is the place of all of the environmental crises of our times. It is a place of environmental racism: the Valley exists on stolen land, and its people are being slowly killed by pollution.
Photos by Errol Young.