June 2, 2018

Maude Barlow, a leading critic of the North American Free Trade Agreement, has tweeted, "Trump’s trade war has effectively killed NAFTA. He would not participate in a Chapter 19 challenge [in which a binational arbitration panel would decide if imposed duties are merited] or abide by a trade ruling. NAFTA is dead."

Now Peter Donolo, the former director of communications to prime minister Jean Chrétien, also writes, "NAFTA – at least as we know it – is dead. Donald Trump just killed it. The reckless and crippling 25-per-cent tariff on steel and 10-per-cent tariff on aluminum that the U.S. President’s administration just used to bludgeon Canada and Mexico (not to mention the entire European Union) is the murder weapon."

In his opinion piece in The Globe and Mail, Donolo notes, "This week the Prime Minister told a Toronto symposium that no NAFTA would be better than a bad NAFTA deal. And there are strong indications that no deal is the preferred option of the Trump administration. So what is our Plan B?"

June 1, 2018

Is it possible that the Canada-China Foreign Investment Protection and Promotion Agreement (FIPA) was a factor influencing Prime Minister Justin Trudeau's decision to buy the Kinder Morgan pipeline?

The answer is likely yes.

1- The Trudeau government is encouraging Chinese investments in the tar sands
In June 2017, the Canadian Press reported on Natural Resources minister Jim Carr's visit to China. It noted, "Carr's message? Canada welcomes Chinese investment, including in the oilsands, he told a conference call from Beijing — a departure from the previous Conservative policy of keeping state-owned-enterprises out of Canada's energy sector." At that time, Oil Sands Magazine reported, "Carr spent the week in China trying to sell investors on Alberta's energy sector. Carr says the government 'would welcome investment from any nation that's interested in the oil sands'."

June 1, 2018

MP Romeo Saganash speaks in support of Bill C-262 prior to its Third Reading in the House of Commons on Wednesday.

The Council of Canadians welcomes the passage of Bill C-262 in the House of Commons earlier this week, but joins with many others in calling for the Trudeau government to act in accordance with its key principle of free, prior and informed consent, notably with respect to the Kinder Morgan pipeline project.

The CBC reports, "A private member's bill aimed at ensuring Canada's laws are in harmony with the United Nations Declaration on the Rights of Indigenous Peoples has earned the approval of the House of Commons. Bill C-262, introduced by New Democrat MP and reconciliation critic Romeo Saganash, won the support of MPs by a margin of 206 to 79 and is now en route to the Senate."

May 31, 2018

A major No Pipe rally is being organized for Friday July 6 - starting at noon-hour - in the Town of Pictou, Nova Scotia.

The Council of Canadians will be there because we are opposed to a plan that would see the Northern Pulp-owned Abercrombie Point mill in Nova Scotia move up to 90 million litres of effluent a day via a 10.5 kilometre pipeline across the floor of Pictou Harbour and then release it through six pipes into the Northumberland Strait.

The Pictou Landing First Nation, Nova Scotia Mi'kmaq chiefs, the Maritime Fishermen’s Union, the Prince Edward Island Fishermen’s Association, the New Brunswick Fisheries Association, the Gulf Nova Scotia Fleet Planning Board and numerous other groups have also expressed concerns about this proposal.

May 31, 2018

Morneau will hold a media conference on June 2 at the Squamish Lil’wat Cultural Centre about the G7 finance ministers meeting.

Finance Minister Bill Morneau and Minister of International Development Marie-Claude Bibeau are co-hosting the G7 Finance and Development Ministerial meeting that started today and runs to June 2 in Whistler, British Columbia. The meeting will include G7 finance ministers, development ministers and central bank governors and feed into the G7 summit taking place June 8-9 in Charlevoix, Quebec.

While the US-imposed steel and aluminum tariffs Morneau has described as "absurd" will be a key issue, another absurd situation should also receive critical attention.