July 29, 2014

CETAThere have been a flurry of developments on the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) over the past four days.

July 29, 2014

Detroit’s water crisis has drawn international attention in recent weeks putting a spotlight on the water cut-off program being pursued by the city. Organizations on the ground have been calling for an end to the cut-offs since March when the city announced it would begin shutting off water services to 1,500 to 3,000 households every week. Following a report  to the UN Special Rapporteur on the Human Right to Safe Drinking Water and Sanitation submitted by the Blue Planet Project/Council of Canadians and Detroit groups, Special Rapporteur Catarina de Albuquerque warned that the mass water shut-offs were a violation of human rights.

After mounting pressure the city announced a 15-day suspension on new shut-offs yet groups continue to call for the shut offs to end permanently.

Canadian water convoy

July 28, 2014
  1. Good news!  Second-largest oil port on the American East Coast says no to tar sands

The city council of South Portland, home to the second-largest oil port on the East Coast, recently voted by a wide margin in favour of a land-use ordinance blocking the loading of crude oil onto ocean tankers. This includes tar sands crude that local residents are concerned could enter their community from Exxon Mobil’s Portland-Montreal pipeline.

July 28, 2014

This morning the Grassy Narrows (Asubpeechoseewagong) First Nation and the Chiefs of Ontario held a press conference regarding the province’s decision to push ahead with clearcut logging at all costs on Grassy Narrows traditional territory and hide a 100 page report about the effects of mercury poisoning on the community.

The residents of Grassy Narrows First Nation have suffered for decades from the effects of mercury poisoning after 10 tonnes of neurotoxins were released in the area.  Despite this unacceptable situation, multiple provincial governments (including the current Wynne government) have failed to act.

July 28, 2014

After almost three weeks of bombing, the death toll in Gaza rose to more than 1,030 on Sunday. The Palestinian poet Jehan Bseiso writes, "There’s more blood than water today in Gaza."

Haaretz notes, "After two and a half weeks of bombardments from the air and ground, roughly two-thirds of the Gaza Strip’s inhabitants — 1.2 million people — are suffering from severe disruptions to the water and sewage systems, according to Emergency Water Sanitation and Hygiene, a coalition of around 40 humanitarian groups operating in the occupied territories. In addition to the damage of the central pipeline and the reservoirs — which affects cities and villages throughout Gaza — home pipes and water containers on roofs have been damaged by the bombardments."