The long awaited report from the US Army Corps of Engineers on how to keep Asian carp out of the Great Lakes has finally been released. The report evaluates the many waterways connecting the Mississippi River to Lake Michigan –all potential avenues to allow several species of Asian carp into the Great Lakes. The 5 year report costing $20M is titled Great Lakes and Mississippi River Interbasin Study (GLMRIS).
Silver and bighead carp already make up about 95% of the biomass in rivers downstream of the Chicago River. Over a century ago Chicago built a canal to reverse the flow of the Chicago River to divert their sewage and stormwater south into the Mississippi rather than their waterfront beaches. The “reversed” Chicago River flow has been supported by two US Supreme Court decisions.
Sierra Club's Waste Diversion Expert, Rob Muir, continues to emphasize the necessity of waste diversion to combat climate change. Local government has an important role in making it happen, however, the key is developing sustainable consumer behaviour. We need to be more conscious of how resources are used, the products we consume, and how we deal with our waste.
Watch Rob's video on Ottawa's Green Bin Program here.
On Tuesday October 22, Sierra Club Ontario, Sierra Club Peel Region Group and Credit Valley Conservation hosted a tree planting at Erindale Park, Mississauga. This event concludes Sierra Club Ontario’s tree planting for the season. We had a turnout of 11 volunteers and we managed to plant 143 trees, making our Grand Total 925 trees this year! The club joined with Credit Valley Conservation for four tree planting events this year, which took place in Streetsville Memorial Park, Meadowvale Conservation Area, Birchwood Park and finally Erindale Park.
OTTAWA - The decision by the Pest Management Regulation Agency (PMRA) to let another year go by without acting on bee killing pesticides -- even after admitting its actions to date have been inadequate -- is unacceptable, says Sierra Club Canada.
The PMRA posted a notice on its website September 12th admitted: "current agricultural practices related to the use of neonicotinoid treated corn and soybean seed are affecting the environment due to their impacts on bees and other pollinators."
Saturday Nov. 16 a group of volunteers in Peel brought a strong message to local MP's in Brampton. We participated in a "Bike for the Climate" event, riding the Etobicoke Creek Trail from MP Parm Gill's office to MP Kyle Seeback's office. We carried signs with the message that we don't want dirty tar sands or leaky pipelines running through our communities. We invited both MPs to participate but they didn't respond to our invitation.
Sierra Club Canada's Ontario Chapter was instrumental in the decision by our provincial government to shut down all coal plants. The day has come! Toronto environmental lawyer Dianne Saxe has a nice piece on her website about it:
Goodbye to Nanticoke, and all that coal
by DIANNE SAXE on JANUARY 15, 2014
January 8 marked the last day of operation of the Nanticoke Generating Station, the last operating coal-fired electrical generating facility in southern Ontario. This latest shut down will help mark 2014 as the year Ontario will become a coal-free jurisdiction.
At its December meeting the City of Mississauga’s Environmental Advisory Committee (EAC) passed on to Mississauga Council a recommendation to apply to add the City’s publicly owned Credit River and Etobicoke Creek valley lands to the Greenbelt. The Greenbelt resolution is on the Council agenda for its February 12th meeting. If successful, the Mississauga initiative will be the first addition to the Greenbelt under Ontario’s new Urban River Valley (URV) designation, enacted early last year. It will also mark the expansion of the Greenbelt into Ontario’s second most populous municipality.
The Star published an article Energy board proposal for fixed hydro rates called “Robin Hood in Reverse” in the Business section on Tuesday. In a recent draft report, the Ontario Energy Board proposes a fixed monthly rate for utilities rather than charging households by how much power is consumed. Sierra Club Canada is a founding member of the Green Energy Coalition (GEC). “It is Robin Hood in reverse,” argues a letter from the GEC.