Lakes Michigan/Huron/Georgian Bay water levels are now within a few centimetres of setting a new record low. While more wetlands are drying up, the number of dead birds and fish washing up on the south shores of Georgian Bay are increasing every day. Dead loons, ducks, grebes and Lake Sturgeon ( a Species At Risk) are being picked up by local residents wearing protective gloves.
Locals hope funds can be raised to dredge the entrance to the Nottawasaga River to allow Lake Sturgeon in next spring to be able to spawn. With levels expected to decline more over the coming months the ecological and economic costs are mounting. Interest and support for restoration of Lakes Michigan Huron Georgian Bay waters levels has now broad support around the Great Lakes.
“We know that the government isn’t looking out for our safety so we are turning to people throughout the province to let the public know what’s really going on,” said Don Bester with the Alberta Surface Rights Group. “Hundreds of spills happen every year and still this government does nothing. We had three major spills last month alone. How many more have to happen before the government finally acts?”
According to the Energy Resources Conservation Board in 2010 there were over 600 spills and leaks from energy related pipelines in Alberta. Two of the last three major spills were undetected by the company but instead, were reported by third parties.
Energy giant Shell Canada Energy plans to increase bitumen production at the Jackpine Mine site by 100,000 bpd, bringing mining production to a total of 300,000 bpd.
The expansion would include space for new mining and processing facilities along the east side of the Athabasca River, approximately 70 km north of Fort McMurray.
Interested individuals and groups are now invited to provide comments and questions to a joint review panel in Ottawa. The panel, which was created to assess the environmental effects of the proposed project, must receive all comments in writing by Aug. 3, in order to be considered. All comments received by the panel will be considered public and will be posted online.
Comments, both in French or English, can be sent by mail, email or fax to:
First-Nations communities along the St. Lawrence River are warning the federal government to get tough with firms that wish to transport nuclear waste via the waterway, despite new challenges created by the Tory government’s massive omnibus budget bill.
Bruce Power, Canada’s first privately-owned nuclear power generator located on Lake Huron, had applied to the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission (CNSC) in 2010 to transport nuclear waste to a Swedish treatment facility. The waste would be shipped to Sweden via the St. Lawrence Seaway.
It has been a busy few weeks here in Ottawa and across the country. People everywhere are talking about devastating changes to environmental law and regulation (Canadian Environmental Assessment Act and Fisheries Act) undemocratically crammed into the federal budget.
New information from the internationally respected coastal consulting firm W.F.Baird & Assoc.comes this very disturbing report that Lakes Michigan/Huron/Georgian Bay water levels based on many historic trends should be 50cm higher than they are right now. Baird agrees that climate is a factor but that the rate of erosion in the St Clair River that has lowered lake levels is ongoing and has likely increased very significantly.