Muskrat Falls

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Muskrat Falls was a natural 15-metre (49 ft) waterfall located on the Churchill River about 25 kilometres (16 mi) west of Happy Valley-Goose Bay, Labrador.

The hydropower potential of Muskrat Falls was recognized in the early 1900s when the Grand River Pulp and Lumber Company proposed to build a dam along with a paper mill. Neither was ever constructed. In the early 1970s an engineering and geotechnical survey was carried out to determine the hydro potential of the site. The site will be developed as part of the Lower Churchill Project, despite concerns of methylmercury poisoning by researchers and local Inuit.[1][2][3]

It is rumored[according to whom?] that in 1944 the crew of a German submarine had beached it at the falls when they decided to withdraw from World War II.[citation needed] The rumour inspired a novel by Walter Sellars, Hard Aground published in 1992,[4] but was thought to be unsupported. In 2010, coast guards searching for three men who died after being carried over Muskrat Falls found a 30-metre-long (98 ft) object on the bottom of the Churchill River, believed by diver Brian Corbin to be the missing U-boat.[5] However, examination of historical records shows this to be unlikely, and the sonar images were quite grainy.[6]

Coordinates: 53°14′44″N 60°46′17″W / 53.24556°N 60.77139°W / 53.24556; -60.77139[7]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Scientists back Inuit in efforts to limit mercury poisoning risk from Muskrat Falls hydro project - Technology & Science - CBC News". Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  2. ^ "Not just Muskrat Falls: Harvard study identifies higher health risk in 11 other hydro projects - Newfoundland & Labrador - CBC News". Retrieved November 11, 2016.
  3. ^ Olsen, Deidre (December 7, 2018). "How Activists Are Resisting a Megadam That Threatens 'Cultural Genocide'". Vice. Retrieved June 14, 2021.
  4. ^ Kelly, Ann (October 1992). "Book Review: Hard Aground". CM Archive. 20 (5). Archived from the original on January 24, 2020.
  5. ^ "German U-boat may be at bottom of Labrador river", CBC News, Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, July 25, 2012, retrieved July 27, 2012
  6. ^ Hopper, Tristan (April 19, 2013). "Group on mission to prove there is truth in legends that Nazi submarines went far inland from Canadian coast". National Post. Retrieved June 15, 2021.{{cite web}}: CS1 maint: url-status (link)
  7. ^ "GeoNames Query -Muskrat Falls: Query Record Details". Natural Resources Canada. Government of Canada. November 9, 2008. Archived from the original on June 8, 2011. Retrieved November 9, 2008.