Austerity and obscurantism. These were the defining features of the first full calendar year of Stephen Harper’s majority government, which came to a quiet close this week.
Take, for instance, Bill C-38, Canada’s longest-ever federal budget. Setting out $5-billion in spending cuts, the budget was the most austere in over a decade. And yet, despite the depth of the slashes and thus their potential to remake the country, their nature and likely impacts remain intentionally obscure. As part of an omnibus budget, most of the cuts were not evaluated by the relevant parliamentary committees; details about their implementation were withheld from watchdogs and opposition MPs; and many cuts were to programs without which it will be very difficult to measure the price we’ve paid for austerity.
Dartmouth, NS - HRM Diverse, with help from Canon Canada's Take Root Program presented by Evergreen, will be planting trees in Russell Lake West this Saturday, Oct. 5th from 11 - 1PM as part of an initiative to establish a forested area made up of 7 native tree species in the HRM's new Baker Drive Park.
Halifax, NS –Sierra Club Canada –Atlantic Canada Chapter is calling for immediate action to remedy gaps on ocean protection outlined in the Fall 2012 Report of the Commissioner on the Environment and Sustainable Development, released today. The Report focused on the offshore petroleum boards and federal departments’ ability to safeguard the environment, oil spill readiness, and progress in establishing a network of marine protected areas in Canada.
There is no denying the amount of fight still left in Farley Mowat. Just let him get going on the “evil forces” who are sacrificing the environment in their lust for oil.
The writer, conservationist and conversationalist, who completed what he declared to be his final book nearly three years ago at the age of 89, is irate. A proposal to put an offshore oil and gas well in the Gulf of St. Lawrence will not go away, and Mr. Mowat is aghast at the depths of human folly.
Back in 1984, he wrote a book called Sea of Slaughter that detailed a litany of environmental wrongs in the gulf and on the Atlantic seaboard. The looming development, known as the Old Harry Prospect, holds the potential to unleash more of the same, Mr. Mowat said this week in a telephone interview from Cape Breton, where he and his wife, Claire, spend their summers.
HRM Diverse Walks is a monthly walk created for those of us who are interested in learning more about the history and nature in and around the city we call home. This month's walk will be led by Mr Bernie Hart, volunteer heritage secretariat at the Fairbanks Centre and a former teacher and chief education curator at the Nova Scotia Museum. As a researcher at the Fairbanks Centre, he's an expert in the human history of Shubie Park, and is also very knowledgeable of the plants and wildlife in the area. But don't worry, he'll be the only expert on the trail with us, everyone else will be just as eager to learn as you are!
Halifax, NS – Community and environmental groups, members of the Nova Scotia Fracking Resource and Action Coalition, applaud the Municipality of Colchester Municipal Sewer Use Appeal Committee for its decision not to allow the release of fracking wastewater through the Debert sewage system.
Howie Chong is the new National President of the Sierra Club Canada, and he is in Halifax this week to meet supporters, and to get input and ideas about organization priorities and direction.
He is here to introduce himself to members of the Sierra Club Atlantic, based in Halifax, and to encourage involvement and participation on important regional and national issues including: oil and gas exploration in the Gulf of St. Lawrence, opposition to fracking, and promoting renewable energy.
About five years ago, residents of Yarmouth and surrounding areas joined together and formed the Tricounty Watershed Protection Association to stop the pollution being caused by mink farms at the headwaters of the Meteghan, Sissaboo and Tusket rivers. The Department of Environment conducted water tests in 10 lakes and 75 kilometres of the Tusket River for three consecutive years. The final water test results concluded that the mink farms were the probable cause. The government cancelled further water tests and no action was taken, despite the protests from citizens and environmental groups.
[Halifax, NS] - HRM Diverse, a program run by the Sierra Club Canada, Atlantic Canada Chapter is hosting a series of expert guided nature walks this summer throughout the HRM. Geared toward members of the public who want to learn more about wilderness in urban settings, a monthly expert will guide the walks and provide information and answer questions. The first HRM Diverse Walk will be held at Point Pleasant Park on Saturday June 29th at 1:00 PM, and will meet in the Tower Road parking lot.