Arvida, Quebec, is part of a cross-border ecosystem responsible for the metal in three out of four American cars.
If ever a town embodied U.S.-Canadian symbiosis, it’s Arvida, Quebec. Built by Americans, its giant smelter supplied most of the Allied forces’ aluminum in World War II and today makes metal used in Budweiser beer cans, Tesla and Ford cars and in AR15 rifles, part of the 2.5 million metric tons that Canada sends over the border each year.
But now this corner of French-speaking Canada is in America’s cross hairs after the Trump administration’s shock move to tax metal from its closest ally under the pretext of national security.
“When you want to kill your dog, you will say he has rabies,” Mayor Josee Neron said in an interview. “To see one person destroy all that in just a blink of an eye, I think it’s too bad.”
From above, the area looks like a model train set: impossibly picturesque with enough infrastructure to set a young engineer’s heart soaring. Locomotives wend through Sphagnum moss-like trees, and hydroelectric plants straddle navy-blue rivers. There are port facilities at the mouth of the fjord, towers garlanded by hundreds of miles of transmission lines, five smelters and a refinery, all owned by the area’s largest private employer and top aluminum shipper to the U.S., Rio Tinto Group.
The Saguenay–Lac-Saint-Jean region is part of a cross-border ecosystem that supplies almost half of the aluminum used in the U.S., including the metal found in three out of four American cars.
For the rest of this article: https://www.bloomberg.com/news/features/2018-06-28/trump-trade-war-looms-over-canadian-town-built-to-supply-america