I had originally intended to write this column about my trip to Washington, DC on February 7-8, when I met with United States Senators and Congresspersons about climate and the Keystone XL pipeline. In brief, the trip was very successful in making links with strong proponents of climate action. Things are moving. The US General Accountability Office had decided that as a threat to federal government finances, climate change is now classed ‘high risk’.
2013 Complete Streets Forum is TCAT's sixth annual active transportation conference taking place on May 27, 2013 at the Hyatt Regency in Toronto. The Share the Road Cycling CoalitionOntario Bike Summit 2013 will take place on May 28-29th at the same location. We are pleased to offer joint registration for both conferences at a discounted rate.
OTTAWA — Faced with uncertainty over its proposed Keystone XL pipeline, which would link Canada’s oil sands with the American Gulf Coast, TransCanada said on Thursday that it would build a pipeline to eastern Canada.
The pipeline company announced that it would proceed with a $12 billion pipeline that could move up to 1.1 million barrels a day to New Brunswick, to serve a region that now relies on imported crude oil for the overwhelming majority of its supply.
Canada has no plans right now to follow the European Union's decision to ban a class of pesticides it believes is responsible for the deaths of many honey bees.
Health Canada's Pest Management Regulatory Agency said it already started a comprehensive review of three pesticides in the neonicotinoid class following last year's accidental poisonings of more than 200 apiaries in Ontario and Quebec by farmers applying the pesticides during plantings.
But it said that review is continuing and more investigation is needed to determine if the pesticides pose a significant environmental risk to domestic and wild pollinators. In the meantime, it has issued new rules to farmers on how to avoid killing bees with the pesticides.
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.
There are warnings the tidal bore in the Bay of Fundy will light up by itself if a plan to dump more than four-million litres of fracking waste water into the ocean goes ahead.
The water, which has some level of naturally occurring radiation in it, is in a holding tank right now, but Atlantic Industrial Services plans to dump that water into the Debert sewer system if it can get approval.
The district manager for the provincial environment department’s Truro office has given the dump the thumbs up, but nothing is official until the Municipality of Colchester says so.
The municipality is holding public hearings on the topic tonight and tomorrow.
There are concerns fracking companies don’t reveal all the chemicals used in their “special sauce” recipe that they use to get the gas out of the ground.
Research is questioning the logic behind the federal government's move to streamline environmental assessments.
After tracking thousands of assessments over a decade, the peer-reviewed findings of Derrick de Kerckhove suggest a great majority of Fisheries Act environmental reviews over the last decade were completed well within recommended timelines.
Nor was there a bottleneck of projects being held up by a clogged review process, he said.
"We didn't find any. Even when the input was high, it seemed to be handled very well."
De Kerckhove, a University of Toronto PhD candidate, analyzed 10 years worth of data from Department of Fisheries and Oceans annual reports on the progress of environmental assessments triggered under the Fisheries Act. That legislation generates more such reviews than almost any other — anywhere from 7,700 to more than 12,000 in a single year.
Sierra Club Canada and the Ontario Chapter submitted a detailed report on the Pickering Nuclear Station request for permit extension. Our research has turned up a good argument for immediate closure of the plant - certainly not operating it beyond its own planned obsolescence.