Saturday, October 31, 2015

Time For a Green Makeover For 24 Sussex?

National Observer

Momentum is building for an audacious plan to turn the prime minister’s official residence in Ottawa into a national showcase for super-energy-efficient housing, and a powerful symbol of Canada’s promise to make a difference on global climate change. Story here.

Thursday, October 29, 2015

Vultures Nearing Extinction in Africa

The Guardian

Carnivorous birds, which help stem spread of disease by eating carcasses that would otherwise rot, targeted by poachers. Story here.

Syria May Be the First Climate-Change Conflict, but It Won’t Be the Last (Story & Video)

While our political establishment dithers, the Pentagon recognizes that climate change is an immediate threat to national security. Story here.

Wednesday, October 28, 2015

Teen Pregnancy and Sexual Violence Soars in Nicaragua

Plan Canada

Early pregnancy is one of 6 barriers commonly keeping girls from school. In Nicaragua, where the rates of teen pregnancy are the highest in Latin America, the issue is spiraling out of control. Story here.

Tuesday, October 27, 2015

Climate Change Could Make The Persian Gulf So Hot People Can’t Spend More Than A Few Hours Outside

Think Progress

This summer, a heat wave sent temperatures near the Persian Gulf skyrocketing, with outdoor temperatures reaching as high as 120°F throughout parts of Iraq and Iran. And while those temperatures might seem extreme, a new study published in Nature Climate Change suggests that scorching temperatures could become increasingly common in the region by the end of the century, if climate change is left unchecked. Story here.

Local Food Systems in Manitoba on the Minds of Young, Small Farmers

Manitoba Co-Operator

Many farmers are embracing small-scale, sustainable agriculture and are focusing on selling their food directly to families throughout the province by developing community food networks. Story here. Details here.

Monday, October 26, 2015

Climate Change a Major Health Threat to Children, Doctors Warn

CBC News

Climate change poses a rising global public health and safety threat, and children are particularly vulnerable, the American Academy of Pediatrics says in a new policy statement. Story here.

Sunday, October 25, 2015

The Toxic Contamination of Manitoba First Nations Communities


According to the Treasury Board of Canada's "Contaminated Sites Inventory," of the 77 “high priority” contaminated sites in Manitoba, 70 are situated in First Nations communities. Story here.

Exxon Sowed Doubt About Climate Science for Decades by Stressing Uncertainty


Collaborating with the Bush-Cheney White House, Exxon turned ordinary scientific uncertainties into weapons of mass confusion. Story here.

Friday, October 23, 2015

Mexico Braces for Hurricane Patricia: 'Strongest Storm Ever Measured'

Common Dreams

'An extremely dangerous, potentially catastrophic hurricane,' warns the National Hurricane Center. Story here.

Capitalist Production vs. The Earth

Briarpatch Magazine

While environmentalists may not often approach the issue of the environment from the point of view of labour, they have made sincere efforts to link their concern with the issue of labour generally. STORY HERE.

12-Star Conservatives Who Will No Longer Be With Us


After a long decade in power, the Stephen Harper years are now history. Here are 12 other Conservative stars who will no longer twinkle following Monday night's vote. Story here.

Thursday, October 22, 2015

'Never Seen Anything Like This Before' as 2015 Set to Be Hottest Year on Record

Common Dreams

With many eyes turning to UN talks in Paris, Earth continues to exhibit symptoms of a planet on fire. Story here.

TPP Deal Opens Canadian Dairy Market More Than First Reported

Manitoba Co-Operator

Milk protein isolates will enter tariff free, making it even more difficult for Canada to dispose of surplus skim milk. Story here.

In Hawaii, Concern Rises About Use of Farm Pesticides


“Ever since we moved here, we all have sore throats and we cough all the time,” says a 40- Details here.

Wednesday, October 21, 2015

Europe's Greenhouse Gas Emissions Fall to Record Low


Member states report a 23% drop since 1990, but the pace is slowing and several countries have missed renewable and energy efficiency targets. Story here.

High Stakes – Cleaning Up After Harper

Common Dreams

Canadians couldn’t have been much clearer on Monday when they hit the polls in numbers that haven’t been seen for decades…Story here.

Tuesday, October 20, 2015

Campaigners Bid Harper Adieu While Vowing to Hold Liberals Accountable

Common Dreams

Yes, Trudeau's sweeping win was a repudiation of "negative, divisive politics" in favor of "a positive vision that brings Canadians together"—but the new prime minister still has much to prove. Details here.

Monday, October 19, 2015

Manitoba Clamps More Restrictions on Moose Hunting as Populations Continue to Decline.

Manitoba Conservation and Water Stewardship advises that effective immediately, moose hunting is closed to all hunters in Game Hunting Areas (GHAs) 29 and 29A, in the Turtle Mountain area.  This conservation closure is in addition to previous closures in and around west-central and eastern Manitoba. 
PinP  photo.

Sunday, October 18, 2015

Lynton Crosby Abandons Harper


The Australian dirty tricks strategist brought in last month to salvage Stephen Harper’s re-election campaign has abandoned the Conservatives, according to the spin doctor’s partner. Story here.

Fracking Studies Overwhelmingly Indicate Threats to Public Health

A comprehensive new look at a wide range of research concludes that fracking inevitably pollutes water and air and harms people. Story here.

American Farmland Titan Eyes Canada

Alberta Farmer

"Farmers National" manages two million acres in the U.S. Details here.

Canada Election: How Stephen Harper’s Fossil Fuel Gamble May Have Backfired


The Conservative prime minister pledged to make the country an ‘energy superpower’, but with the election ahead and many Alberta residents struggling to make ends meet, a promise has become a liability for Harper. Story here.

Saturday, October 17, 2015

Canada's Liberals Knew Their Campaign Co-Chair Worked for Pipeline Company

Vice News
Canada's Liberal party knew Dan Gagnier was working as co-chair of the Liberal campaign while he worked as a consultant for major pipeline company TransCanada. Story here.

The US Government Says Billions of Animals Died From the BP Gulf Disaster


One of the lucky ones. A turtle rescued  from the Gulf and nursed back to health. Photo credit-New England Aquarium. 
Tens of thousands of dead birds. More than 170,000 turtles. A billion newly hatched fish — and maybe as many as 8 billion oysters.That's the federal government's estimated toll on wildlife from the undersea blowout.....Story here.

Friday, October 16, 2015

The Lightest Metal Ever is 99.9% Air

The material will soon be used by Boeing in airplanes and rockets to cut down on their weight, create more room within the fuselage and increase fuel efficiency. Story here.

Thursday, October 15, 2015

Invasion of the Ladybugs

If you live in Winnipeg, Manitoba, you may have noticed ladybugs lately. A lot of ladybugs. It turns out our unseasonably warm weather is to blame. Ladybugs hibernate, and the warmer weather fooled them into thinking it was spring. Story here.

Public Services Under Attack Through TTIP and CETA

Public services in the European Union (EU) are under threat from international trade negotiations that endanger governments’ ability to regulate and citizens’ rights to access basic services like water, health, and energy, for the sake of corporate profits. Story here. 

Former Liberal Campaign Co-Chair Was Being Paid by TransCanada


Former Liberal campaign co-chair Daniel Gagnier has been working for months for TransCanada Corp., helping it with its controversial Energy East pipeline, while at the same time working as an key advisor to Liberal Leader Justin Trudeau. Details here.

Climate Change Will Have Big Effects On Spring And Winter


A robin shivers in a Canadian "false spring." PinP photo.
Climate change will shorten winters by about three weeks by the beginning of next century, according to a new study. Story here.

Wednesday, October 14, 2015

Tuesday, October 13, 2015

Global Parents Unite to Protect Children from Climate Catastrophe

Common Dreams
'Out of love for our grandchildren, it’s our responsibility to work towards a more harmonious world for both present and future generations.’ Story here.

Power Still Out in Eastern Manitoba After Thanksgiving Windstorm

CBC News

Manitoba Hydro crews wait for first light to fly into communities left without power Sunday. Details here.

Freed Canadian Journalist Slams Stephen Harper for 'Abandoning' Him in Egyptian Prison


Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy says he'll continue to advocate for press freedoms and the rights of other detained journalists. Story here.

Austria and Italy Fully Ban GM Crops With EU Opt-Out


Austrian Health Minister Sabine Oberhauser and a number of Italian Ministries have confirmed that both countries are officially requesting an opt-out from growing the eight varieties of  GM maize permitted or set to be permitted at the EU level, thus there will now be a full ban on GM crops in both countries under new EU regulations. Story here.

Monday, October 12, 2015

Pesticides Found in 12.5% of Indian Food Samples


Identifying a major health hazard, the government has found residues of pesticides in a significant proportion of vegetables, fruits, milk and other food items collected from various retail and wholesale outlets across the country. Story here.

'Capitalism is Mother Earth's Cancer': World People's Summit Issues 12 Demands

Common Dreams

The establishment of an independent climate tribunal to hold wealthy nations accountable emerged as a central goal of conference in Bolivia. Story here.

Friday, October 9, 2015

Thursday, October 8, 2015

Manitoba Hail, Reseed Damage Claims Above Average

Manitoba Co-Operator

CNS Canada –– Farmers have seen more weather-related hardships this year than normal, made evident by an above-average amount of hail and reseed damage claims. Story here.

Wednesday, October 7, 2015

Why the TPP Will Not Work For Workers

The Nation
The signatories of the Trans-Pacific Partnership just announced that they have inked the final agreement, ending years of secret negotiations and back-room corporate deal-making. And still, the full text, which will set trade rules for roughly 40 percent of global commerce in a dozen Pacific Rim countries, remains a secret, even as the accord hurtles toward Congress for an accelerated vote.  Story here.

RELATED:  "Free Trade: Path to Prosperity - or Back Road to Corporatism?"

Premier of Ontario Kathleen Wynne Visits IISD-ELA

International Institute for Sustainable Development

IISD Experimental Lakes Area (IISD-ELA) was pleased to welcome Premier of Ontario Kathleen Wynne and her partner Jane Rounthwaite for a visit on August 30, 2015. Story here.

Writer Laments Absence of MP From Poverty Debate.

Dear Editor, 

I’m disappointed that our Conservative Member of Parliament, Robert Sopuck did not attend the forum on child poverty here in Neepawa recently. 

The Harper Government Crawls Into Bed With a Shady Accounting Firm.

CBC TV News.
Watch video here.

Tuesday, October 6, 2015

Monday, October 5, 2015

Nearly a Third of World's Cacti Face Extinction, Says IUCN

Cactus display at the International Peace Garden, 
Manitoba. PinP photo.
Illegal trade is causing shocking decline in plants that are vital to desert ecosystems, most comprehensive global assessment yet reveals. Details here.

'Once-In-A-Millenium' Flooding Creates 'Otherworldly Scenes' in South Carolina


Officials warned that the historic deluge will likely worsen as climate experts discussed connections between warming planet and extreme weather. Story here.

Sunday, October 4, 2015

Colombia In The Shadow Of Human Rights Abuses

Common Frontiers

In 2007, Prime Minister Stephen Harper announced Canada’s new “Americas Policy,” through which Canada would build trade ties with governments that shared Canada’s values of “democracy, human rights, rule-of-law and good governance.” The Canadian government then announced negotiations for a free trade and investment deal with Colombia, the country with the worst human rights record in the hemisphere. Story here.

When Canada Took Away Captain Paul Watson's Passport on Behalf of Japan


Despite being a Canadian going back fourteen generations to 1587, Sea Shepherd captain and anti-whaling activist Paul Watson can no longer enter Canada because Stephen Harper took away his passport to placate Japanese whalers. Story here.

Murray Rankin v. Canada

Rankin, an NDP MP, acted on behalf of an American mining corporation in its successful bid to sue Canada using NAFTA. Story here.

Saturday, October 3, 2015

WHO Deplores Bombing of MSF Clinic in Afghanistatn

GENEVA - The World Health Organization (WHO) deplores the bombing of a clinic run by Medecins Sans Frontieres (MSF) in Kunduz, Afghanistan, and extends its sincere condolences to the families and colleagues of those killed and injured. This represents a major loss for MSF and the affected community - to whom WHO offers its sympathy and support - and a serious challenge to humanitarian work in Afghanistan.

Feds Penny-Pinched on Science Libraries While Lavishing Funds on Religion and Oil


Beginning in 2008 — at the height of the global financial crisis — the federal government spent over$20 million on Christian religious groups and schools, including $495,600 for the Wycliffe Bible Translators in Langley, B.C. and $3.7 million transferred from federal funds to “Youth for Christ” in Winnipeg. It also set up….STORY HERE.

How John Baird Bungled Mohamed Fahmy's Release


Canadian journalist Mohamed Fahmy wasted no time in blasting the Harper government just 18 days before the federal election for overstating its role in securing his recent release from an Egyptian jail. Details here.
RELATED: "Pick up the Phone, Steve! Demand Justice for Mohamed Fahmy!"

This Country Is Already Carbon Neutral and Now Plans to Go 100% Organic and Zero-Waste

It has been hailed as one of the greenest countries on Earth. Currently, the country’s carbon emissions rate is a negligible 0.8 metric tons per capita, according to the World Bank. Not only is it carbon neutral, it’s also a carbon sink—making it one of the few countries in the world to have negative carbon emissions. Story here.

Friday, October 2, 2015

National Televised Leaders Debate Cancellation is an Affront to Democracy.

News Release - Green Party of Canada.

 GRANDVIEW October 2, 2015 – Despite efforts by the Greens and the major national English language television broadcasters, the NDP have withdrawn from the national leaders' debate and today the debate has been cancelled.

“Cancellation of the National leader’s debate is a huge blow to democracy and to Canadian voters." said Kate Storey, local Green Party candidate for Dauphin Swan River Neepawa (above). 

A Candidate's Forum on Child Poverty Touches a Nerve in Manitoba.

by Larry Powell
Planet In Peril has sorted through some of the confusion surrounding the absence of Robert Sopuck (above), the Conservative Member of Parliament for Dauphin-Swan River-Neepawa, from a candidates' forum on child poverty in Neepawa on Wednesday. 

About a month ago, his office told forum organizers that he would be attending. But his office manager in Neepawa, Christine Waddell, later announced he could not attend due to "scheduling conflicts." She said the night of the event, he was in Inglis, a small town in the western part of his riding. 

This morning, however, Sopuck himself told PinP he had actually been in Roblin, a larger town just north of Inglis. A newspaper ad indicated it was a "meet and greet" affair. But that was in the morning in Roblin, a town within a 3-hour drive of Neepawa. So it's still not clear what the event in Inglis was which took priority over a candidate's forum.

The MP bristled at my suggestion that his absence from the Neepawa event might leave him open to criticism that his party, his government or even himself, do not care about hungry children. "That's a low blow," he replied.

Sopuck said his party's answer to fighting child poverty is economic development which "the Socialists and the Greens" always oppose.

All of the other four candidates attended the Neepawa event.

Please also read: "Conservative MP Absent From a Child Poverty Forum in Southwestern Manitoba." 

Thursday, October 1, 2015

Conservative MP Absent From a Child Poverty Forum in Southwestern Manitoba.

Are hungry kids a priority for the Harper government?

by Larry Powell

The forum (for the riding of Dauphin - Swan River - Neepawa) was sponsored by the Mission and Services Committee of the Neepawa United Church. It drew about 80 people to the church on Wednesday. But only four of the five candidates (see below) took part in the debate - Ray Piché (Liberal),  Kate Storey (Green Party), Inky Mark (Ind.) and Laverne Lewycky (NDP).

The 5th candidate, the sitting Conservative MP for the area, Robert Sopuck (represented by the empty chair on the right), did not attend. His office manager in Neepawa, Christine Waddell, said he was in Inglis, a small community in the western part of the riding for the evening. She did not elaborate. But she did explain that a campaign worker was mistaken when he told forum organizers earlier that Mr. Sopuck would, in fact be there.

Piché, the Liberal candidate, said the MP's absence showed “disrespect” for the rest of the candidates. 

The church committee wanted to stress that child poverty in Canada is actually worse now than it was in 1989. That’s when the House of Commons voted unanimously to bring an end to the problem by the year 2,000. 

A display on the church wall, illustrating the impact of poverty on children. 
PinP photos.

For his part, Piché pledged that, if elected, his party would allocate $20 billion over 20 years in a "social framework" which would include early learning programs, quality child care and more parental leave for mothers after childbirth.

Lewycky said parents now pay up to $1,000 a month for child care. Under an NDP government,  he promised, parents can expect quality child care for just $15 a day.

Storey said the Green Party supports an experimental income support program such as the one conducted in Dauphin in the 70s, called “Mincome”. By “topping up” incomes of low - wage earners, many positive results were documented, including fewer hospital visits and lower crime rates.

Mark told the forum he too would support such a plan, but only if it replaced other programs, such as social assistance. He said children aren't the only ones who suffer poverty. Seniors do, too. And he suggested neither the Canada Pension Plan nor Old Age Security should not be taxed. 

Sopuck himself hasn't yet commented on his absence.

The forum was taped and will be broadcast on NACTV in Neepawa at 8 o'clock, CDT, this evening (Oct. 1).

Massive B.C. coal mines are about to get a new owner. Why some are worried about Glencore’s record

THE NARWHAL Coal mine at Tumbler Ridge, B.C.  Jeffrey Wynne ,      If the sale goes through, the company will inherit a contamination proble...