Showing posts from May, 2011

Chevron Feels the Heat: Annual Shareholder Meeting Brings Huge Protests For Oil Giant's Abuses Around the World

Alternet - May 31-'11 "We are the human face of Chevron's operations, armed with the memories of our dead relatives, our neighbors, our sick children," said one woman who traveled from Ecuador. Details here. Please also read: Chevron Wins Halt to $18 Billion Judgment in Ecuador Pollution Case 

Government of Manitoba Will Launch Action-Plan To Save Lake Winnipeg: Selinger

News Release - Manitoba - May 31'11  The province will take the steps necessary to save Lake Winnipeg, Premier Greg Selinger announced today, following a five-year study of the lake. Details here.

Prospect of Limiting the Global Increase in Temperature to 2ºC is Getting Bleaker

May 2011 - International Energy Agency CO2 emissions reach a record high in 2010; 80% of projected 2020 emissions from the power sector are already locked in. Details here.

Outrage Grows Over New Brazilian Rain Forest Law

Planetsave - May 30 '11 - A controversial piece of “forest reform” legislation was passed by the Brazilian senate this past Tuesday... Details here.   Soy field in the Brazilian Amazon

Factory Farms Produce 100 Times More Waste Than All People In the US Combined and It's Killing Our Drinking Water

Alternet May 28'11  "Factory farms are dangerous to the environment; they are ticking time bombs of manure just waiting to be spilled into public waters." Details here. Sarah Kearny - Wpg Free Press.

Province, MB Hydro Sign Electric Vehicle Partnership With Nissan CA

The Province of Manitoba is distributing this release on behalf of Manitoba Hydro, Nissan Canada and the Province of Manitoba. News Release - May 27'11 An electric (not necessarily a Nissan) car - IEA photo Zero-emission Vehicles Key To a Fossil Fuel-free Future:  Chomiak The Province of Manitoba and Manitoba Hydro are entering an agreement with Nissan Canada to work together on initiatives that will help advance the use of plug-in electric vehicles in the province, Innovation, Energy and Mines Minister Dave Chomiak announced today. "Manitoba has a roadmap for a fossil fuel-free future and this agreement is another strategic partnership that will help move us along that pathway," Chomiak said.  "Electric vehicles could present a significant opportunity to help reduce greenhouse-gas emissions in Manitoba and benefit our economy by allowing us to replace imported fossil fuel with our own clean, renewable hydroelectricity as an affordable energy source

Killer Tornadoes: How Devastating Extreme Weather Is Linked to Human-Caused Climate Change

AlterNet - May 27-'11 - News audiences are seeing an increasing number of "severe weather" warnings on TV, but little connection has been made to the role humans have played in driving climate change. Details here.

Retiring AG Sheila Fraser says Climate Change, First Nations Must be Dealt With

By: Bruce Cheadle, The Canadian Press - May 25-11 OTTAWA - Auditor General Sheila Fraser delivered a farewell address Wednesday in typical blunt-spoken fashion. Details here.

Cars Swept Away by Colombian Floodwaters


US Military Goes to War With Climate Sceptics

Guardian.UK May 20'11 - Political action on climate change may be mired in Congress, but one arm of government at least is acting: the Pentagon. Details here.

Updated Building Codes in Manitoba Apply Only To New Hog Barns. Why?

Barn Fire Kills 4000 Hogs (Free Press 23 May) - Letter to the Editor There are not many experiences as horrifying as trapped animals being burnt alive and the stench of death after the fire.          Kichiro Sato AP I consider this great loss and the multitude of previous hog barn fires can be attributed to the failure of our government(s) to protect the welfare of animals and those who take care of them.  Where was the stand of the Pork Council and the Association of Manitoba Municipalities.? Shouldn't they have been questioning the lack of appropriate safety codes and regulations.? Regulations and codes that would help  protect "the Industry" that they helped to spawn, nurture and expand over the past decade and more?.                                                                                   For years, Hog Watch organizations and rural people complained that those huge hog  factories being constructed as ordinary farm buildings, was wrong for t

Iraq and Syria Under Attack From Devastating Alien Weed

FAO - May 24th - UN Rome - Silverleaf nightshade takes root in Lebanon and Jordan too. Details here. PLT - Globalization strikes another blow - against farmers. l.p.

Elizabeth May Calls for Federal Flood Support

18 May 2011 - 12:17pm OTTAWA - Elizabeth May, Leader of the Green Party and MP-elect for Saanich-Gulf Islands, is calling on the federal government to provide federal government support for the thousands of Canadians impacted by flooding in Manitoba and in Quebec. “The provinces and victims should not have to bear the burden of clean-up and recovery for these massive disasters alone. There should be federal support, especially for the First Nations communities that have been affected,” said Ms. May. “The federal government will also have to be prepared to assist with the environmental impacts, as there are concerns these floods have washed large quantities of sewage and farm chemicals into sensitive waterways.” “This is an unprecedented situation, with serious flooding happening simultaneously in multiple regions of the continent,” added Ms. May. “Once the clean-up is done and life has returned to normal for the affected communities, we are going to have to look at the br

Busting the Climate-Deniers - Crock of the Week


Climate Change Blamed for Record Mississippi Floods

WASHINGTON, DC, May 20, 2011 (ENS) Human-induced climate change is contributing to the recent heavy rain and ongoing record flooding along the Mississippi River, and we can expect more extreme weather events in the future, according to the Union of Concerned Scientists. Details here.

'Like a Monster Coming Down the River'

By Kiley Kroh 5/17/11 Center for American Progress Record Flooding Threatens Gulf Coast—Again. Details here.

Canada Oil Output Cut as Alberta Wildfires Rage

May 17, 2011 Canadian oil production cuts could more than double by Wednesday as companies move to protect employees and property from wildfires raging through northern Alberta… Details here.

Pop Goes the Crop: Fields of Watermelon Burst After Growth Chemical Overdoses in Eastern China

By: Alexa Olesen, The Associated Press - 05/17/11 BEIJING, China - Watermelons have been bursting by the score in eastern China after farmers gave them overdoses of growth chemicals during wet weather, creating what state media called fields of "land mines." Details here. PUBLISHER'S COMMENT: This is certainly a jurisdiction we ought to be emulating. Now all we have to do is grow exploding watermelon here and we won't have to import them from way over there! Yeah! That's the ticket! l.p.

Help Launch the New Rainbow Warrior!


My Letter on Climate Change Touches a Nerve!

Below are some of the comments which my letter "Ditches Not Enough,' generated when published in the Winnipeg Free Press.     •    "'reducing your carbon footprint' nonsense.What a ridiculous belief."     •    "'Fixing the climate' is a tomorrow problem. We neither caused climate change nor do we have the means/know-how to correct it." Is this what you think, too?  Please go to the link, above, or this one and add your own comment, "like" or "dislike" them, OR write a letter of your own. OR use the comment link on this post, below! Thanks! Let's get a dialogue going!  l.p.                                  There's little freeboard beneath the Lake of the Prairies bridge (l.) near Roblin, MB. The lake (on the Assiniboine River) is the     reservoir created by the Shellmouth Dam, downstream. And the crest on the Assiniboine, the highest in 300 years, is just now upon us. (Photos by l.p.)

‪NFU - In Union Is Strength - Voices of the National Farmers Union of Canada‬ (Video)


UN Climate Change Panel to Adopt New Procedures, Quality Guidelines

Michael Ricciardi - Planetsave - 5/15/11 Members of the Intergovernmental  Panel on Climate Change (IPCC) have announced adoption of new procedures… Details here.

Flood Fight and Flight Along the Mississippi River

NEW ORLEANS,  05/16/11  (ENS) - The Mississippi River is overflowing its banks, putting pressure on levees from Baton Rouge to New Orleans... Details here.

UN-Backed World Migratory Bird Day Puts Spotlight on Land Sustainability

United Nations News Centre - 14 May 2011  United Nations-backed events celebrating the annual migration of an estimated 50 billion birds are taking place this… Details here.  

The ZENN Car! Ask the Premier, Why Not in Manitoba?


United Nations Chief Urges Change in Resource Consumption Patterns for Sustainable Development

13 May 2011 – UN News Centre Secretary-General Ban Ki-moon today stressed the need for fundamental changes in humanity’s resource consumption patterns and values. Details here.

Renewable Energy Can Power the World, says Landmark IPCC Study

Image 9 May 2011 UN's climate change science body says renewables supply, particularly solar power, can meet global demand. Details here.

The Audacity of Genetically Modified Foods

By Bruce Robinson Daily Camera - 05/08/2011 The biotech industry, led by Monsanto, promotes the idea that the arguments about genetically modified crops should focus on the science and the economics as Monsanto sees them. Read more:

The Cost of Doing Nothing (about Climate Change)!

This is the CBC (aerial) video of the dike being deliberately breached at the Hoop & Holler Bend in the Assiniboine River, near Portage La Prairie.

A Grandpa's Plea for Future Generations

David Suzuki - Science Matters - May 13'11 We shouldn't expect the kids to clean up our mess.

Harper Ignores Climate Change to his Discredit

NOTE; My letter below, now appears in the Winnipeg Free Press online at: as "Ditches not enough." ======= Dear Editor, It was quite a spectacle. There was Prime Minister Harper, who once called climate change "a Communist plot," blissfully inspecting the devastation it has created in Manitoba before his very eyes. But rather than launching a frontal attack on its root causes, he predictably promised to help Manitoba dig deeper ditches and build higher dikes.   Scientists who know the most about the topic have warned for years that climate change is playing a role in the terrible storms around the world which are getting worse and more frequent. And that, in all likelihood, includes the worst flooding this province has seen in centuries. So, if we hope to protect our earthly home in more meaningful, lasting ways, we need to cut back on the fossil fuels we burn in

The Canadian Wheat Board's Going... Now What?

By: Laura Rance - Wpg. Free Press - Posted: 05/7/2011  Monopoly did much more for farmers than just sell their grain for them. Details here.

Climate Change May Not Only Be Causing More Mega-Fires, Those Very Fires May, in Turn, be Worsening Climate Change!

May 10-'11 Food & Agriculture Organization scrape TV  FAO calls for wildfire emissions monitoring and comprehensive fire management strategies.  Details here.

Divisive Dams Approved in Patagonia, Chile

International Rivers - 9/5/11 Coyhaique, Chile - A five-dam hydroelectric scheme that locals fear will destroy the character of one of Chile's most important wild regions was approved today.  Details here.

Manitoba's Flood Picture Remains Challenging

Manitoba News Release - May 8, 2011 - FLOOD BULLETIN #38 - Manitoba Water Stewardship reports: *    A three-day unstable weather system is expected to bring widespread rain ranging from 20 to 50 millimetres across the entire southern Manitoba watershed.  The Assiniboine River, just below the Shellmouth Dam. Due to recent rain, soils have a reduced capacity to retain water and any further rain will likely run off into streams and rivers.  *Communities along the Assiniboine River between Portage la Prairie and Headingley are advised that water levels along the river will be increasing in approximately two to four days.  The unprecedented flows are a result of last week's weekend storm, the timing of the melt from the storm and additional rainfall forecast for this week.   *Water levels on the Assiniboine River at the First Street Bridge in Brandon are 1,182.17 ft., an increase of 0.87 ft. since yesterday.  *    Protective dikes in Brandon are being raised another t

Evacuations Possible in Brandon Due to Rising River

Winnipeg Free Press - 05/6/2011 Faulty gauge led to innaccurate water level readings. Details here. Water thunders over the Shellmouth Dam spillway, upstream of Brandon in late April, with the reservoir behind it at near capacity. (l.p. photo)

Probe Demanded After Worst Alberta Oil Spill in Four Decades

 By Darcy Henton, Calgary Herald May 5, 2011 Read more here.

An Update on Manitoba's & Saskatchewan's (Climate-Spawned?) Flooding

-by Larry Powell In the community of Eriksdale, north of Winnipeg, flooding is now threatening homes, the hospital and personal care home.  A farm home near Yorkton, SK, isolated by floodwaters. A flood warning is in effect for the Dauphin Lake Basin, including Parkland and the Duck Mountains, especially once the snow melts & there's lots of that yet to come. Runoff from Riding Mountain has already increased the flows of the Valley, Vermillion and Ochre Rivers significantly. The Turtle River has risen by over a meter (4 ft) since Monday!  Runoff from both the "Ducks" and Riding Mountain are adding significantly to the flow of the Assiniboine River. Because of a swollen Assiniboine, points downstream, St. Lazare, Brandon, Portage and Winnipeg are still under a continuous and prolonged flood watch. Conditions on the Assiniboine have been affected by the same blizzard and heavy rains which struck a wide area last weekend. The huge Lake of the Prairies near th

UN Targets Widely-Used Pesticide Endosulfan for Phase-Out

Geneva, 3 May 2011   Representatives from 127 Governments meeting in Geneva last week agreed to add endosulfan to the United Nations' list of persistent organic pollutants to be eliminated worldwide. Details here.

Voting System Cheats Canadians Again - Fair Vote Canada

Fair Vote Canada - May 3, 2011   Canada’s national citizens’ movement for voting reform has released an analysis of Tuesday’s federal election results showing that the outcome does not accurately reflect the way Canadians voted.  Details here.

A Small Step Forward

by Larry Powell  Last winter, I asked CBC Manitoba to start announcing atmospheric C02 levels on their weathercasts. (See "CBC Manitoba Thinks Nothing Can Be Done About Climate Change!) C02 levels cause global warming, melting ice caps and glaciers, rising sea levels, droughts, floods, blizzards, tornadoes, cyclones, hurricanes, and ice storms. Safe levels are 350 ppm or below. They have already been way above that for some time. At the time of my request, the CBC said it would be "inflammatory" to announce such levels.  But I finally did convince their broadcast meteorologist,  John Sauder, to place a link to C02 atmospheric levels on his website, "John Sauder's Forecast."  (Lower left.) Thank you, John! You have done the public a real service! l.p.

Soggy Fields Put Northern U.S. Farmers on Tight Deadline

Manitoba Co-operator - Apr 29'11 - By: Suzanne Cosgrove -Chicago | Reuters Conditions described here are hardly confined to the US. Vast farm fields, such as this one near Winnipeg in March, were covered by snow-melt in another vast flooding event. l.p. Incessant rains have turned Indiana farmer Larry Winger's grain fields into ponds, making it impossible for him to seed his corn crop. Details here.

Fossil Fuel Industry Gives us Cause to be Skeptical

Science Matters - David Suzuki    The priority for people who run oil companies is to maximize profits. Details here.