Last week, nearly 30 Council of Canadians chapters organized events from coast to coast to coast to promote water justice in Indigenous communities as well as in their communities. Chapters organized events and activities to draw attention to important water issues like fracking, the Site C dam, Blue Communities, Nestlé and other bottled water takings, offshore drilling, the Canadian Navigable Waters Act, wetlands and much more.
A dozen chapters organized screenings of the powerful film Water Warriors which tells the story of the inspiring fracking fight in New Brunswick. The Water Warriors website describes the film as a story about “a multicultural group of unlikely warriors–including members of the Mi’kmaq Elsipogtog First Nation, French-speaking Acadians and white, English-speaking families–set up a series of road blockades, preventing exploration. After months of resistance, their efforts not only halted drilling; they elected a new government and won an indefinite moratorium on fracking in the province.” Click here to watch the trailer.
Many of these chapters also screened Story of Stuff’s A Tale of Two Cities, a short film about how Nestlé continues to pump water for bottling in Evart, Michigan while two hours away in Flint, residents are suffering from lead poisoning and in the grips of a water crisis. The film ends by highlighting how Great Lakes groups including the Council of Canadians came together to organize a summit Water Is Life: Strengthening the Great Lakes Commons in Flint last fall. Watch the full 12 minute film here. https://storyofstuff.org/movies/tale-of-two-cities/
These Great Lakes groups came together again this year to organize an online summit on March 14, 2018. The purpose of the online summit was to share updates on Nestlé's bottled water takings, the privatization of water infrastructure and drinking water advisories in Indigenous nations and the pollution of water, how these issues impacts Great Lakes communities and how communities can take action. Click here to watch a recording of the online summit.
On March 22, the Council of Canadians, Story of Stuff and Wellington Water Watchers launched this new video Water for Life, Not for Profit! The Fight Against Nestlé in Ontario. The Council is calling for a Boycott on Nestle and for Ontario, British Columbia and other provinces to phase out bottled water takings.
The South Shore chapter and staff organized three tour events in Nova Scotia to expose the risks of offshore drilling to waters in Nova Scotia. https://canadians.org/NS-offshore-tour The Saint John chapter organized a celebration as they have in past years with karaoke singing this year. The Brandon-Westman chapter organized events for the whole week from March 19-23 including a special taping on their bi-weekly TV show, Time for Awareness, about how Europe handles its water. Several chapters organized events to draw attention to the harmful impacts of the Site C Dam.
Several chapters made Blue Communities presentations or educated people at public events about the Blue Communities Project. The Blue Communities Project promotes water as a commons by encouraging municipalities to pass resolutions recognizing the human rights to water and sanitation, promoting public water services and banning or phasing out bottled water. The Council of Canadians released the new Blue Communities Frequently Asked Questions to address some common questions from municipal councilors and mayors and other community members about the project.
On top of this, more than fifteen chapters participated in Defend the Water actions to stop Kinder Morgan.