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."

July 26, 2014

There is some extraordinarily good news today!

Reuters reports, "Germany is to reject a multibillion-dollar free trade deal between the European Union and Canada which is widely seen as a template for a bigger agreement with the United States, a leading German paper reported on Saturday. Citing diplomats in Brussels, the Sueddeutsche Zeitung reported that Berlin objects to clauses outlining the legal protection offered to firms investing in the 28-member bloc. Critics say they could allow investors to stop or reverse laws."

July 24, 2014

Angus Reid Global today released the results of an online poll it conducted in mid-May looking at support amongst Canadians for CETA, the Canada-EU Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (and a handful of other trade-related issues).

On the surface, things look great for CETA, with the poll indicating that 68 percent of Canadians either strongly (25%) or moderately (43%) support the deal. By contrast, the poll found that only 1/10 Canadians oppose a trade deal with Europe.

But that top-level result doesn't tell the whole story.