I’ve just heard that over 1000 letters have gone to the Prime Minister’s office and trade committee members asking that water be protected from NAFTA. The letters were in response to an Action Alert and media release we sent out last week on the effect the AbitibiBowater NAFTA settlement will have on future investor challenges to federal and provincial policy related to water and resource management. The NAFTA investment claim against the government of Newfoundland, which the Harper government settled without a fight, has essentially privatized water in Canada.
Steven Shrybman presented to trade committee on behalf of the Council of Canadians, explaining the case “clearly put the concept of water as a public trust on a direct collision course with treaty-based corporate and commercial rights,” and that, “not only will the AbitibiBowater settlement invite similar claims against Canada, but is likely to also be taken up internationally by corporations seeking to establish proprietary rights to water in a world where this non-renewable resource is becoming increasingly scarce.”
It’s not too late to send your letter to the Prime Minister and trade committee demanding that water be protected from NAFTA. Water is not a commodity or a proprietary right that companies can assert and claim compensation for. It is and must remain a public trust to be managed extremely carefully as a scarce common resource.
To send your letter today, click here.