June 27, 2017

TrumpOp-ed by Gordon Laxer, published in the Vancouver Sun, June 23, 2017

U.S. President Donald Trump is known for tweeting alternative facts. But occasionally, perhaps inadvertently, his tweets conform to real facts. When he approved the building of TransCanada’s Keystone XL pipeline, Trump said it would “reduce our dependence on foreign oil.” Given that the pipeline would be filled with mainly Alberta bitumen, Trump revealed that he thinks Canadian oil is American oil.

Unfortunately, it’s virtually true. NAFTA’s proportionality rule (Article 605) gives Washington, D.C., virtually unlimited, first access to most of Canada’s oil and natural gas.

June 27, 2017

The Laurentian Channel is a critical migration route for humpback whales.

The Trudeau government is seeking public comment on its regulations to allow oil and gas exploration in a marine protected area it plans to establish in the Laurentian Channel (a deep underwater trench between Newfoundland and the Maritimes), where the Gulf of St. Lawrence meets the Atlantic Ocean.

The marine protected area would be divided into two management zones.

The Globe and Mail reports, "The proposed regulations would prohibit oil and gas activities within smaller, particularly sensitive sectors but allow it with some restrictions in most of the protected area. Seismic activity, which uses acoustic waves to detect oil and gas formations, would be prohibited from Aug. 1 to Nov. 30 to protect certain species 'during sensitive life-cycle periods'."

June 26, 2017

Water imageInteresting article by Joe Gunn who asks "Is water ‘sacred,’ or is it ‘a human right’?” in the Prairie Messenger, June 21, 2017

Elder Josephine Mandamin, an Anishinabek initiator of the “Mother Earth Walks,” takes the responsibility to care for water very, very seriously. Now moving about slowly herself, with the aid of a walker, she once lead Water Walks around the five Great Lakes, and even covered the length of the St. Lawrence River on foot. She believes that women, as life-givers, have a special responsibility to protect water as a sacred gift from the Creator, as the “lifeblood of Mother Earth.”

June 25, 2017

Photo of the week: The Victoria chapter and allies gathered on the grounds of the British Columbia legislature on June 17 to protest against the Trudeau government capitulating to U.S. pressure and refusing to participate in new United Nations talks on nuclear disarmament that involve 120 countries.

1- North Shore (British Columbia) chapter activist Betty Griffin passes away

2- Fredericton chapter opposes Trudeau government's approval of Sisson Brook mine
3- Edmonton chapter holds picnic to discuss blue community campaign
4- St. John's chapter activist hands out Muskrat Falls 'bottled water' at Fortis Energy Exchange forum
5- Hamilton chapter holds public forum on water crisis

6- Victoria chapter at ban the bomb protest outside BC Legislature
7- Winnipeg chapter at 36th annual peace walk
8- PEI chapter at the 'ban the bomb' protest in Charlottetown

June 22, 2017

Rally for electoral reform in St. John's in February 2017.

The St. John Chapter has been pushing for years for electoral reform in Canada, and recently wrote an op-ed in The Telegram titled Let’s put electoral reform in voters’ hands.

“Proportional representation is not a radical option, in spite of what the Liberal party would like us to believe. More than 90 countries now use some form of proportional representation. Scotland, Northern Ireland and Wales have also gone that route. Why, then, not us?”