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Showing posts from June, 2012

Heat... Fire... Disaster: What Climate Change Looks Like

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June 29, 2012 by Common Dreams   Western US fires are being driven by extreme temperatures, which are consistent with IPCC projections. Details here.   Devoured: A firefighter works the scene of a home being consumed by flames in Colorado, captured by Darrell Spangler  

After Rio, we Know. Governments Have Given up on the Planet

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George Monbiot - the Guardian It is, perhaps, the greatest failure of collective leadership since the first world war. Full story here. PLT photo  Please also read: "Governments and the Climate Challenge. Leadership Failure on a Psychotic Scale"

Violent Storms in Eastern US Leave 3 Million Without Power in Sweltering Heat; 13 Killed

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By: Jessica Gresko, The Associated Press WASHINGTON - Millions across the mid-Atlantic region sweltered Saturday in the aftermath of violent storms that pummeled the eastern U.S. with high winds and downed trees, killing at least 13 people and leaving 3 million without power during a triple-digit heat wave. Full story here. Residents of the eastern Canadian prairies were no strangers to violent weather, either. See photos, below. Winds of over 100K per hour struck the area around the west-central Manitoba town of Roblin this week.It was just part of a much larger system that created havoc from Saskatchewan into a wide area of Manitoba. Below , some of the damage in our own yard, northwest of Roblin.   (PLT photos)  

Canada Dives Back Into Asbestos Industry

Montreal Gazette Doctors condemn move, but miners and residents applaud it. Full story here.

Prime Minister Harper, Where's My Canada?

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Dear Larry, Canada has become a country that I barely recognize. My Canada, the one that respects people and places, has vanished. Since when did this country bully charities, trash environmental laws, thumb its nose at the international community and silence its own citizens? Columbia Icefield, Jasper Nat'l. Park Since Harper took office in May of last year, His Canada starts and ends in the Tar Sands. Whatever Big Oil wants, Big Oil gets. Fish, forests, wildlife be damned. Our government’s actions are appalling. That’s why this Canada Day I’m honouring my country by vowing to bring back my Canada . I invite you to join me by making a gift to ForestEthics Advocacy today. Here’s why. Like millions of Canadians, I value clean air and water. I take great pride in this country’s stunning landscapes. I believe government is entrusted to act on behalf of its citizens. And I think every voice must count. This is My Canada. ForestEthics Advocacy is working hard to

Sea Level Rise Accelerating in U.S. Atlantic Coast - US Geological Survey

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(Courtesy of Google Images)   Rates of sea level rise are increasing three-to-four times faster along portions of the U.S. Atlantic Coast than globally, according to a new U.S. Geological Survey report published in Nature Climate Change.  Details here.

Elizabeth May: Rookie MP makes mark in Parliament

  By PETER O'NEIL, Vancouver Sun June 22, 2012 OTTAWA - Elizabeth May is holding the last staff meeting of a parliamentary session that is ending this week with the Green party leader and rookie West Coast MP getting widespread accolades for her impressive, though predictably ....Details here.

Earth's Defenders Being Murdered at Increasingly Alarming Rate

June 19, 2012 by Common Dreams Environmentalists across the world being killed at rate of one per week, and growing . Story here

Wheat Board Finished but Battles Rage on

Winnipeg Free Press By: Laura Rance  06/23/2012 Supporters still could turn to Supreme Court. Story here.

India Wakes up to the Menace of Chemically-Enhanced Veggies

India Today - June 24-'12 Several studies have established the fact that the level of harmful chemicals in India's edible crops is perilously high because of excessive exposure to pesticides or other growth enhancers. Now, the Delhi government is planning to weed out this health hazard by detecting the specific contaminants in vegetables and fruits with the help of mega scanners right at the entry point . Full story here.

The National Farmers' Union Rejects Completely Martha Hall-Findlay’s Anti-Supply Management Report

NFU News Release - June 22, 2012 Ottawa: “Former Liberal leadership candidate Martha Hall-Findlay has made public both her opposition to, and her lack of understanding of Canada’s supply management system for dairy in the report she presented in a press conference yesterday,” said Paul Slomp, National Farmers Union (NFU) Youth Vice President. “Her report is full of misinformation, skewed statistics, contradictions, and reprehensible arguments calling to eliminate supply management in order to gain points in behind-closed-doors international trade negotiations.”

Biodiversity and the Environment: Silent Spring For Us?

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by Dr. Paul Craig Roberts - Centre for Research on Globalization With her 1962 book, Silent Spring, Rachel Carson got DDT and other synthetic pesticides banned and saved bird life. Today it is humans who are directly threatened by  technologies designed to extract the maximum profit at the lowest private cost and the maximum social cost from natural resources. Full story here.   Bumblebees on an  organic acreage.  PLT photo

Mexico Saves Coral Reef From Over-Development!

Dear Larry, VICTORY! Cabo Pulmo coral reef saved! Mexican President Felipe Calderón just put an end to plans that would have imperiled the marine paradise of Cabo Pulmo National Marine Park, home to the only living hard coral reef in Mexico’s Gulf of California. Please thank President Calderón for doing the right thing! Mexican President Felipe Calderón has just rejected plans for a massive resort complex that could have devastated the marine paradise of Cabo Pulmo, its coral reef and the local community. This is a huge victory for NRDC and all the local, national and international groups that waged a strong multi-year campaign urging officials to abandon the destructive proposal called Cabo Cortés. Tens of thousands of BioGems Defenders like you stood strong in vocally opposing this mega-tourism scheme. Please send a message to President Calderón and thank him for stoppin

The Great "Locavore" Debate

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"Q" CBC Radio PLT photo     Between farmer's markets and a new trend of grocery stores advertising "local food," locavorism seems to have gone mainstream.  But is it really as good for you, and the environment, as you think?  Pierre Desrochers, one of the authors of The Locavore's Dilemma is joined by Jill Richardson, author of Recipe for America for a Q debate. Listen to the podcast here.

Manitoba Schools to Teach Sustainability: Selinger to Rio Summit

By: Nick Martin Winnipeg Free Press Manitoba students will have a new Grade 12 course on sustainable development, and every school will have a sustainability plan, Premier Greg Selinger said today at the Rio+20 United Nations Conference on Sustainable Development in Rio de Janeiro. Full story here.

Tell Brazil Rio+20 Host: “The World We Want” Is Not 60 Amazon Rainforest Destroying Dams

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ACTION ALERT PLEASE SEND, SHARE, LIKE, FORWARD! By Rainforest Portal http://www.rainforestportal.org/ – a project of Ecological Internet June 20, 2012 TAKE ACTION To protect the Amazon with sustainable development based upon standing rainforests:   http://www.rainforestportal.org/shared/alerts/sendsm.aspx?id=brazil_xingu Brazil’s government – host of the “Rio+20” UN Conference on Sustainable Development devoted to sustainable development and sustaining ecosystems – is planning to build 60 dams on tributaries to the Amazon -- including the controversial $11 billion Belo Monte project. Industrial destruction of intact primary rainforest ecosystems based upon ecocide and genocide is not “the world we want” – a motto of Rio+20. These plans for massive Amazon dam construction reveal Brazil’s meaningless rhetoric regarding environmental sustainability and sustainable development, as they hypocritically continue destroying key regional and global ecosystems. Brazil’s decep

The Mendacity of Hope

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George Monbiot - June 18, 2012 PLT photo The summits which promise to save the world keep us dangling, not mobilising . Full story here.

Dark Ages Redux: American Politics and the End of the Enlightenment

by John Atcheson - Common Dreams We are witnessing an epochal shift in our socio-political world. Full story here.

TAKE ACTION to Protest Failed Global Ecological Leadership

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ACTION ALERT  PLEASE SEND, SHARE, LIKE, FORWARD! Rio+20: Protest Global Leaders Obama, Merkel and Cameron’s Absence By Ecological Internet June 18, 2012   http://www.ecoearth.info/shared/alerts/sendsm.aspx?id=rioplus20 PLT photo These major nations dawdle as Earth burns. Their failed leadership obstructs international efforts to protect our one collapsing biosphere while sustainably meeting all of humanity’s basic needs… Based upon ecological science, we know what must be done to sustain Earth’s life and human advancement: protect and restore primary forest and other intact ecosystems, immediately begin reducing emissions to avoid abrupt climate change based upon common but differentiated responsibilities, reduce inequitable consumption and population growth, and promote fairness in sharing of Earth’s dwindling abundance amongst all nations and their peoples… What could possibly be more important than ensuring Earth remains habitable, and all humanity’s basic needs

Robert Sopuck - Environmentalist or Hypocrite?

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Dear Editor,  I've been struck by the irony of recent, published pictures of my Member of Parliament, Robert Sopick. Smiling broadly, he is shown in one, presenting trophies to the winners of a fishing derby and, in the other, in beaming attendance at a sport fishing banquet (below) .  A few days later, the government Mr. Sopuck represents, rammed through the all-purpose budget bill which included the gutting of the Fisheries Act. Now, all the Act will allegedly "protect" are those fish that are part of "a commercial, recreational or aboriginal fishery." The old Act protected all fisheries, presumably because fish don't always stop abruptly at the boundaries they have been designated. How naive! As a recent article from a Canadian professor of environmental law suggests, if the fish don't "obey" the new rules imposed by Harper, they could find themselves in mortal danger of strip mines, oil spills, clear cuts and the other hazards

Non-Democratic Party Undermining Democracy

Changing Election Law Requires All-party Consultation 06/13/12 For Immediate Release: The Manitoba Government, at its own initiative and without consulting with the other political parties in Manitoba, is moving to completely rewrite election law in Manitoba. Typically amendments to the elections law are suggested by Elections Manitoba, the independent agency charged with overseeing elections, and then discussed at an all-party committee meeting before changes are made. Clearly the principles of democracy once held dear by the NDP have now been abandoned. The proposals before the legislature seek only to cement efforts to create a two party system in Manitoba. “The New Democratic Party of Manitoba should rename itself the Non-Democratic Party of Manitoba,” said Green Party of Manitoba Leader James Beddome. “We are outraged that this stealth attack on a fundamental issue of fairness is brought about by the same stealth tactics the Federal Conservatives are using in Ottawa,” Although on

Cows - Too Much of a Good Thing?

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North Carolina Considers Making Sea Level Rise Illegal

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By Scott Huler | May 30, 2012 Scientific American   According to North Carolina law, I am a billionaire. Full story here.

Harper Government Targeted Artist for her Green Conscience, Internal Documents Reveal

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Vancouver Observer Franke James, a Canadian artist and environmental advocate blacklisted by the Harper government, has obtained internal documents indicating BERNARD WEIL/TORONTO STAR   Canadian officials worked behind the scenes to discredit her work. Full story here.

Update: Election Fraud Legal Cases

Council of Canadians. Tories attack Council of Canadians’ involvement in election fraud court cases In the latest twist of the election fraud scandal, lawyers representing the Conservative MPs fr om the seven ridings involved in the citizen-led legal challenges to overturn election results have filed motions to throw out the cases. The initial legal ski rmishes are now underway, and important developments are expected before the end of June. The Council of Canadians is supporting court challenges to overturn election results by nine electors who allege that they received a fraudulent call advising them of a change in their polling location, that these calls were made to other electors, and that this lowered the voter turnout to a degree that affected the outcome of the election. Several affidavits have been filed in support of these applications, including one from Frank Graves of EKOS Research, whose firm surveyed voters and concluded that there were

It's Time to Fight the Status Quo

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By Bill McKibben  - Solution Climate protest, Regina, SK. 2009. PLT photo My solution is: get outraged. Full story here.  

Stop Enbridge

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A Local Manitoba Government Seems Set to Ignore Concerns Over a Planned Sewage Lagoon

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Dear Editor, It looks like my local government, the RM of Shell River, is pressing ahead with secret plans for a sewage lagoon with no intention of looking at alternatives. It's now been a month since a Manitoba company, Blue Diamond Technologies, briefed a meeting of the RM Council. Blue Diamond has invented a system to treat and purify both hog and human waste, using a patented chemical process. Company officials are confident their technology is cleaner, greener, less stinky and even cheaper (possibly much cheaper) than an old-style lagoon! (See "Company offers new way to deal with human waste" in the May 29th edition of "The Review," p. 9. Please read!)   Just today, one of those officials told me,   they are  still waiting to hear back from the RM, in terms of doing a follow-up or taking a closer look! My elected representatives also seem just as determined as ever to keep information about the new lagoon from the public. They have

Is a Top Tory an Election Crook?

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World's Environmental Outlook Grim, UN Warns

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By Kazi Stastna, CBC News - Jun 6, 2012 A "crop-duster" sprays harmful chemicals on a field in western Manitoba, CA. (PLT photo.) Little progress made on goals set by nations. Details here .

Emphasis on Oil Sands Called a ‘Historic Mistake for Canada’

Richard Blackwell - The Globe and Mail A high-profile adviser on renewable energy to the European Union says Canada is making a huge mistake in placing so much emphasis on the oil sands as the key component of the country’s energy policy. Full story here.