September 13, 2017

During the October 2015 federal election, the federal Liberals stated, "Stephen Harper’s changes to the Fisheries Act, and his elimination of the Navigable Waters Protection Act, have weakened environmental protections. We will review these changes, restore lost protections, and incorporate more modern safeguards."

Following the election, the Trudeau government conducted a series of consultations on the Navigation Protection Act, the Fisheries Act, the National Energy Board Act, and the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act.

The results of those reviews have been disappointing.

For example, Transport Canada issued a response (on June 20) accepting the Standing Committee on Transport, Infrastructure and Communities recommendations (from March 23) on the Navigation Protection Act, the first of which recommends leaving only a scant list of 99 rivers, 64 lakes and three oceans protected under the Act.

September 13, 2017
Ben Gotschall and Andrea Harden-Donahue
Ben Gotschall and Andrea Harden-Donahue during the Prairies Energy East speakers tour, April 2015

I first heard the expression “from NIMBY (not in my back yard) to NOPE (not on planet earth)” from Ben Gotschall, a rancher and Energy Director with Bold Nebraska. Ben first entered the fight against TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline because it threatened the Ogallala aquifer, the water source his ranch depends on. The Council of Canadians brought him to Canada to speak with audiences along the Energy East pipeline path in New Brunswick, Manitoba and Saskatchewan. He shared insights about his journey, which started with his desire to protect his ranch and resulted in him joining a movement that rejects the expansion of the Alberta tar sands because of its impacts on Indigenous communities, our water and climate.

September 13, 2017

The Council of Canadians is endorsing and mobilizing for a national day of action in support of a ban on nuclear weapons.

On August 19, 2016, the Trudeau government voted against the adoption of a United Nations report that recommended negotiations for a global treaty banning nuclear weapons begin in 2017. Despite Canada's vote, the report was passed 68 to 22 and the talks began in March 2017. On July 7 of this year, more than 120 countries voted to adopt the Treaty on the Prohibition of Nuclear Weapons. This coming September 20, heads of state, foreign ministers and other representatives of governments will sign the historic treaty at the UN headquarters in New York City.

The treaty is a multilateral legally-binding instrument that prohibits a full range of nuclear-weapon-related activities, such as undertaking to develop, test, produce, manufacture, acquire, possess or stockpile nuclear weapons or other nuclear explosive devices, as well as the use or threat of use of these weapons.

September 13, 2017

The NAFTA talks are scheduled to take place in Ottawa from September 23-27, likely at Old City Hall, 111 Sussex Drive.

The third round of the talks to renegotiate the North American Free Trade Agreement (NAFTA) will be in Ottawa this coming Saturday September 23 to Wednesday September 27. What will The Council of Canadians be doing around that time?

Monday September 18
The Council of Canadians will release poll results that show what people think about the key issues of water, investment protections and energy proportionality in NAFTA, as well as their view on the need to walk away from a bad deal.

Tuesday September 19
We will be releasing a sign-on letter with Quebecois, Indigenous and English Canadian allies on the need to exempt culture from NAFTA.

Wednesday September 20
Council of Canadians trade campaigner Sujata Dey will be presenting on NAFTA to the House of Commons’ International Trade Committee.

September 13, 2017

The Bombardier CSeries aircraft assembly line in Dorval, Quebec. Photo by Ryan Remiorz/Canadian Press.

What is the dispute between the U.S.-based The Boeing Company and Quebec-based Bombardier Inc. about?

1- The basics
CBC reports, "Boeing argues the Montreal company is unfairly subsidized by the Canadian government and sells its C-Series jets south of the border at below market costs." In May, Reuters explained, "The [U.S. Department of] Commerce probe in Boeing’s case parallels a probe by the U.S. International Trade Commission (USITC) into Boeing’s allegations that Bombardier sold 75 CSeries planes to Delta Air Lines Inc last year at a price well below cost. Bombardier has rejected the allegations and the two sides clashed at an ITC hearing whether the companies’ competing plane models are even comparable."