August 23, 2018

Laurie Embree is a 70-year-old grandmother who spent her first of five days in jail on July 31st. Her offence? Blocking construction at a oil storage tank farm in protest of the planned Kinder Morgan expansion.

I recently spoke to Laurie Embree, also a Council of Canadians supporter, about her experience joining the waves of actions targeting the Burnaby Westridge terminal set to expand from 13 to 26 tanks for the expanded 890,000 barrels of oil per day (from Alberta tar sands)  Kinder Morgan pipeline.

Laurie is in good company.

August 21, 2018
(Photo: Covered Bridge over the Gatineau River, Wakefield, QC by Michel Rathwell. The Gatineau River is a popular place for local residents and tourists to swim and paddle.)
The summer is a time to swim, paddle and enjoy the marvelous lakes and rivers. As a new resident to the area, I feel so fortunate to swim in places like the Gatineau River or Meech Lake so close to home. These clean waterways are a beautiful reminder of how important it is to protect water for our and future generations. 
Despite the myth that Canada has an abundance of fresh water, many people don’t have access to clean water or live near water sources that are at risk from development projects. 
August 21, 2018
Steam rising from a tailing pond at a Suncor mining site, Alberta, Canada. Copyright Alex MacLean.

The Teck Frontier mine is the largest tar sands mine ever proposed. It would cost $20 billion and operate for 41 years. The Council of Canadians will be acting as an intervenor in the Joint Review Panel hearings for the project in Fort McMurray in September because it's unacceptable across every metric we can think of: 

August 20, 2018

While over 550 wildfires burn throughout British Columbia during a state of emergency, a week of action is unfurling to stop the Kinder Morgan buyout. The wildfires ravaging BC are yet another reminder that new fossil fuel infrastructure is a step in the wrong direction. We urgently need to stop expanding the fossil fuel industry and start taking the job of planning a transition off of fossil fuel production and consumption seriously. We need a plan that is responsible to impacted communities and workers. We can do this, climate solutions exist. We need the political will.

August 20, 2018

Today, Politico Trade said that the U.S. will not advocate to eliminate Chapter 11’s investor state dispute mechanisms. Why? It may be because  the newly elected government of Andrés Manuel Lopez Obrador is reviewing energy contracts. Some of these contracts were given to U.S. companies.

In a case of a broken clock being right twice a day, the Trump Whitehouse initially supported the removal of Chapter 11 in NAFTA. They correctly identified that it hampers American sovereignty.

We, too, have continuously opposed this chapter which allows foreign investors to sue governments over policy changes that affect their profits. It has given companies the ability to challenge public interest and environmental policies.