The Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change’s (IPCC) recently released special report can be summed up as: “it’s worse than we thought, and we’re doing less than we promised.” This isn’t new – it has been the crux of every international climate report we’ve had since the UN started working on them in 1988. But as we get closer to our planetary tipping points, the implications are becoming much more existential. To have a decent chance at staying below global warming of 1.5ºC, we will need to cut our emissions in half in the next 12 years.
This week, Council of Canadians Honorary Chairperson Maude Barlow and Trade Campaigner Sujata Dey were in Italy to meet with concerned groups and politicians about the Canada-European Union Comprehensive Economic and Trade Agreement (CETA) and the threats trade agreements pose to food production and water.
The Canadian government ratified CETA despite massive public opposition, but Italy has held out, concerned about the harm CETA will do to the country’s agricultural and food traditions.
In July, Dey noted in a blog post that the 5-Star, Liga Nord Italian coalition government reiterated that not only would it not ratify CETA, but it would remove any official who promotes the agreement.
Photo by the Vancouver Sun
MPs spent their first day back in Parliament after their recent break debating the perils of climate change.
According to the Canadian Press, the emergency debate was granted by House of Commons Speaker Geoffrey Regan just a week after the United Nations Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change released a dire global warning of a looming climate catastrophe.
The report says the world will be facing unstoppable climate change sooner than expected and that urgent government action is needed now.
The article notes that “the world has already warmed up about 1 degree C compared to the mid-19th century and is experiencing the effects of that, including more violent storms, more frequent flooding, longer droughts and more forest fires.”
Tomorrow (October 17), is the United Nations International Day for the Eradication of Poverty. This day has been observed annually every year since 1993 to promote awareness of the need to eradicate poverty worldwide.
To mark the day, the Council of Canadians Hamilton Chapter, along with a number of partnering organizations, is hosting a Forum on Poverty and Inequality in Hamilton.
Participants will also hear from all candidates running in the upcoming municipal elections on October 22. Candidates have been invited to attend to listen and learn about poverty and inequality in Hamilton. Speakers will address the issues of moving the anti-poverty struggle to the next level, what it’s like to live in poverty in Hamilton, and housing the poor In Hamilton.
Solutions to poverty and inequality such as Rent Safe and a registry of landlords, the Guaranteed Basic Income program (which was cruelly cancelled by the Ford government) and how we can make Hamilton poverty-free will also be discussed.
In a recent op-ed in the Globe and Mail, Ed Broadbent and Hugh Segal argue that the time has come for electoral reform
The two argue that proportional representation must replace Canada’s archaic first-past-the-post voting system.
They point to Quebec’s stance on the issue, and what it may mean for electoral reform across the country.
“Three of the four parties now represented in the National Assembly, including François Legault’s Coalition Avenir Québec, who will now form a majority government, have signed an agreement declaring that they will support changing the province’s voting system from the first-past-the-post model to a proportional system before the next election, and do so without a referendum. Mr. Legault now has the clearest of mandates to implement this commitment,” they point out.