Council of Canadians chapters are calling on their Member of Parliament to list local waterways under the Navigation Protection Act (formerly the Navigable Waters Protection Act) given the Trudeau government’s failure to fulfil its October 2015 election campaign promise to restore lost protections for waterways.
In terms of background:
December 2012 -Stephen Harper’s Conservative government decimates the Navigable Waters Protection Act by removing federal oversight on pipelines and power lines from it and by reducing its scope to just 159 lakes and rivers, leaving more than 31,000 lakes and 2.25 million rivers without federal scrutiny
October 2015 – the Liberals criticize the Harper government’s “elimination of the Navigable Waters Protection Act” and promises to “review these changes, restore lost protections, and incorporate more modern safeguards”
March 23, 2017 – the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities recommends the government maintain the Schedule but allow the public to recommend waterways be added to it
June 20, 2017 – Transport Canada issues response accepting the Standing Committee’s recommendations
Now, chapters are writing to their MP to tell them to support the listing of their local waterway in the Schedule.
Over the past week, the South Niagara chapter has called on their MP to list the Welland River in the Navigation Protection Act, the Mid Island chapter called on their MP to list the Cowichan River and Nanaimo River, and the Regina chapter called on MP Ralph Goodale to protect local waterways under the Act.
In May, the London chapter supported MP Irene Mathyssen’s private members Bill C-355 that seeks to add the Thames River to the list of rivers protected waterways.
To join with these chapters to tell your MP to list your local unprotected river or lake, please click on our action alert here.