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.
Food production and bees: Believe it or not, the two go hand-in-hand … like milk and honey.
Bees serve an all-important role in transferring pollen and seeds from one flower to another - a practice that supports at least 30 per cent of the world's food crops and 90 per cent of our wild plants, according to the U.S.-based Natural Resources Defense Council.
But despite a bee's integral role in cross-pollination, news that their population is on the decline is unlikely to come up at the dinner table.
But it is catching the attention of governments around the world, including in Europe, the U.S, as well as here at home, in Canada.
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.
The IJC meetings on the Great Lakes water levels finished off mid-July with some of its most successful turnouts (read about the Midland meeting, where 600+ people attended). The struggle is not over yet. Please remember that the IJC is accepting public comments via mail by September 30, 2012. It is also important to write your MP with the same message: Restore our water levels!
Before writing your letter(s) please ask yourself these questions:
1. What do 13 unprecedented years of low water levels mean to you economically and environmentally ( eg loss of wetlands and fish habitat, water quality concerns, invasion of Phragmites australis on exposed shorelines)?
Toronto, ON -- The Great Lakes Protection Act Alliance - representing six environmental groups - is delighted that Ontario Minister of the Environment Jim Bradley re-introduced the Great Lakes Protection Act today as the new government’s first legislative agenda item.
“We’re thrilled that the Great Lakes are a priority for the government,” said Sarah Winterton, Acting Executive Director, Environmental Defence. “Improving protection for the source of drinking water for 80 per cent of Ontarians and protecting our shorelines and beaches is the right thing to do, and we urge all parties to work together to pass a strong Act.”
The bill was first introduced June 6, 2012, but died on the order table when the legislature was prorogued. Next, the bill will be debated, and amendments considered by an all-party committee.
The Sierra Club, Atlantic Chapter, is looking for someone who is at ease with setting up specific e-mail lists and entering data to help organize our membership outreach and communication. We need someone who is willing to organize current membership lists into useable, reliable form. This is a task-oriented, short-term position. We could really use your help if this sounds like you! If you are interested, please contact Gretchen at firstname.lastname@example.org or call 902-444-3113.
EDMONTON - Thousands of people depend on the water below Alberta’s oilsands region, but the effects of industrial development on those water tables is not yet fully understood, a new report says.
The Cumulative Environmental Management Association released a 37-page report Tuesday that explains groundwater in the region, and warns that lower water levels and poor quality could have “far-reaching consequences.” more