News Washington columnist Douglas Turner writes that “the century-old model of protecting (the Great Lakes) isn’t working at all”, but that “a Canadian author and activist, Maude Barlow, and her Council of Canadians have a better answer.”
He notes, “The Council of Canadians is proposing that the Great Lakes system, its tributaries and aquifers and the St. Lawrence basin be considered an endangered binational ‘Commons’ owned by everybody, certainly not by corporate or government power structures, which have failed to save the lakes from new threats. …The Council of Canadians’ ‘Commons’ approach is like the one that fostered the environmental movement a half century ago: grass-roots, anticipating stone-like resistance from centers of power. Cities, villages, towns and counties of the Great Lakes basin would one by one pass a declaration that the system is an irreplaceable biological resource of drinking water and earth-friendly uses.”
Turner highlights in his column published in the Buffalo News that, “Barlow is on a six-month speaking tour, her second in two years, in the United States and Ontario. She will speak at Monroe Community College in Rochester on April 25.”
This evening Barlow is speaking in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. That city is located on Lake Michigan just 160 kilometres along the shoreline from the BP refinery in Whiting, Illinois. That refinery receives more than 400,000 barrels a day from the tar sands in northern Alberta. It is fed by the Enbridge pipeline that burst in July 2010 and spilled more than 23,000 barrels of diluted bitumen along a 48-kilometre stretch of the Kalamazoo River.