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.
In over a decade of work with businesses and grassroots environmental organizations like Sierra Club Ontario, I cannot recall such an obvious and non- contentious call to action as the one put forth by organizers of the MAYDAY Rally.
Let me clarify. Duffin Creek Water Pollution Control Plant (WPCP), the second largest sewage plant in Ontario, is already a nuisance to the nearby shorelines of Ajax and Pickering. The proposed expansion of the plant to accommodate new residents in York Region should have a commitment to invest in better technology. If the current deterioration of shorelines due to the 340,000,000 litre-per-day discharge is not enough of an alarm bell, surely an expansion of operations is a timely opportunity to invest in a more sustainable solution.
The International Year of Water Cooperation: Restore Our Water International aims to make a global issue local
World Water Day is held annually on March 22rd as a means of focusing attention on the importance of freshwater and advocating for the sustainable management of freshwater resources. 2013 has been declared as the United Nations International Year of Water Cooperation.
Restore Our Water International (ROWI) is a non-profit organization concerned with the unfolding crisis of rapidly declining water levels in the Great Lakes and St. Lawrence basin. Mary Muter, Sierra Club’s Great Lakes Section Chair and ROWI Spokesperson, is extremely knowledgeable about Great Lakes issues and has worked proactively with a broad coalition of organizations and individuals to address environmental impacts.
On this Earth Day I am urging you to take a moment and help us fight for the protection of people living downstream of the Tar Sands. The health and well-being of these downstream communities, including Fort McMurray and Fort Chipewyan, has been sacrificed at the altar of economic-growth-at-all-costs.
Commercial fishing boats make their way back up the Fraser River to Steveston Harbour to offload sockeye salmon near the end of a 32-hour fishery window in Richmond, B.C., on Thursday August 26, 2010.
(DARRYL DYCK FOR THE GLOBE AND MAIL)
The federal Conservative government consulted with both environmental organizations and industry associations before making controversial changes to the Fisheries Act last year, but listened primarily to industry.
When a section of one of the government’s massive 2012 omnibus budget bills limited the scope of the legislation governing the protection of fish and their habitats, some ecologists said it was the biggest setback to conservation law in more than 50 years.
The Great Lakes Section of Sierra Club Ontario is hosting meetings on Wednesday May 29 at the Kortright Centre(Major Mac and Pine Valley Drive) from 7:30pm to 9:30pm and on May 30 at the Rec Plex in Wasaga Beach from 7pm to 9pm.
Learn about the Great Lakes water level crisis. Sierra Club has a policy supporting the need for responsible restoration of Lakes Michigan Huron levels to pre 1962 St. Clair River navigation conditions.
SIERRA CLUB URGES PASSAGE OF THE GREAT LAKES PROTECTION ACT
Sierra Club Ontario wishes to congratulate the Government of Ontario for proposing the Great Lakes Protection Act (GLPA). The recent Second Reading passage of the GLPA provides encouragement that the long delayed Act may become law. For this to occur, support will be necessary. As well, time and political agendas come into play as a provincial election is likely in the spring. The immediate business at hand is the committee process leading to Third Reading and the opportunity to strengthen the GLPA to ensure the prioritization of commitments needed to achieve the goal of a Great Lakes that are sustainable with healthy ecosystems.
Sierra Club Ontario supports a GLPA that clearly addresses the priority issues that must dealt with by Ontario and other Great Lakes Governments to achieve the realization of the above goal. These issues include: