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SCC Green Gazette

May 2004

Sierra Club of Canada's monthly news update
from the National Office, Chapters and Groups

National Office
Atlantic Canada Chapter
Eastern Canada Chapter
Prairie Chapter

BC Chapter
Sierra Youth Coalition



People and the Planet

People and the Planet: Changing Values for a Sustainable Future
May 14 to 16 2004
Southern Alberta Institute of Technology (SAIT), Calgary, Alberta

DON’T MISS Sierra Club of Canada’s second People and the Planet conference! Speakers include Maude Barlow, David Korten, Percy Schmeiser, Andrew Nikiforuk, Ken Wiwa, Stuart Laidlaw, Elizabeth May, Jerry Mander, Bill Phipps, and many others. Topics examined will include climate change, water, biodiversity, food safety and sustainable agriculture and food systems, spirituality, social justice, political action, and others. Special Children’s program, accommodation available, organic food, ECOFair, and so much more!

Forms and information are available on line at:

Media Training

April 26th: A media training workshop was held in Ottawa for national campaign staff, helping to provide them with the tools and skills to be more effective in communicating our messages.

Earth Day

Pictures from this years event in Ottawa and Ten Top things to make every day Earth Day.

Health and Environment

National ILO Day of Action!

SCC along with the Beyond Factory Farming Coalition, of which SCC is a member, organized a national day of action against Factory Farming on Friday April 16th. Actions were held across Canada in Alberta, Saskatchewan, Manitoba, Ontario, New Brunswick and PEI. For more information on Intensive Livestock Operations and the national day of action please visit:

Lawn and Garden

Spring has sprung and it's time to think about your lawn and garden for the summer. Now is the time to overseed your lawn so that you have a thick plush healthy lawn this summer. For more lawn care tips, please visit:

Methyl Bromide Update - UN makes Methyl Bromide Ruling

An intergovernmental meeting on the Montreal Protocol on Substances that Deplete the Ozone Layer has granted limited "critical use exemptions" to 11 developed countries facing a year-end deadline for phasing out methyl bromide. Under the UN's agreement, 11 developed countries have received exemptions to the phase-out totalling 13,438 metric tons of methyl bromide for 2005. Notably, the UN granted the United States 77% of critical use exemptions requested. This means that the United States will have to limit its 2005 production levels for methyl bromide to 7,659 tons. Approximately 5% of the 7,659 tonnes of methyl bromide used in the United States will come from existing stockpiles, so new production of this dangerous ozone-depleting pesticide will continue. For more information please visit:

Atmosphere and Energy

SCC Welcomes Back John Bennett

After a year on secondment to the Climate Action Network, the Atmosphere and Energy campaign is happy to welcome back John Bennett to the Sierra Club of Canada. John has been working on energy issues since the 1970s and his return is an invaluable boost for SCC and the environment. As Senior Policy Advisor on Energy and Climate, John will be helping with SCC’s work on fuel efficiency and Kyoto implementation.

CAFE Canada

General Motors is up to its old tricks: threats & misinformation!

The world’s largest car maker was up to its old tricks last month - using threats and misinformation to avoid meeting its environmental responsibility - when GM Canada president Michael Grimaldi stated that meeting federal government`s Kyoto target of improving fuel-efficiency by 25 per cent improvement would make vehicles in Canada unaffordable

Of course, carmakers used similar threats in the 1970s, but once regulated made fuel efficient cars. If we`re to make our Kyoto targets, the federal government must regulate automakers.

Nuclear Free Canada

Chernobyl, Year 18

April 26, 2004 marked the 18th anniversary of the tragic Chernobyl disaster. In what was called a "logical response to Chernobyl" by Germany's then-Environment Minister Jurgen Trittin, Germany committed to phasing out nuclear power four years ago.

Likewise, Ontario Premier Dalton McGuinty, Québec Premier Jean Charest, and New Brunswick Premier Bernard Lord should all reconsider the risks and costs of keeping their ailing nuclear plants operating.

Mackenzie Pipeline to fuel America’s Gas Tank

Wednesday, April 14, 2004: Ottawa--A new deal to build a pipeline across northern Alberta means that the Mackenzie pipeline is just phase one of a megaproject to extract and export more tar sands oil to the United States say Sierra Club of Canada and Canadian Arctic Resources Committee. News of the deal between TransCanada Pipelines and the Dene Tha’ First Nation of northern Alberta to build the 230 km Northcentral Crossing Pipeline leaked out last week.

Mackenzie Valley Pipeline Update April 28th 2004

Protecting Biodiversity

Species at Risk Tied Up in Red Tape

Friday, April 23, 2004: Ottawa - Delaying listing of species at risk is no way for the federal government to protect them says Environmental Defence and Sierra Club of Canada. The organizations are responding to a decision by the Fisheries Minister today to delay by 9 months a decision on whether to list twelve aquatic species under the Species at Risk Act (SARA).

Backed by a Coalition, Well-Known Naturalist Appeals Cheviot Mine Permits

Wednesday, April 21, 2004: Edmonton: Widely known for his book, Handbook of the Canadian Rockies, and his natural-history tours in the Jasper-Hinton region of Alberta, Ben Gadd is proceeding with his appeal of the provincial permits issued for the first part of the revamped Cheviot mine development.

Conservation groups call on Federal government and teachers to act quickly over Cheviot coal mine

Tuesday, April 13, 2004: Ottawa: Sierra Club of Canada (SCC) and MiningWatch Canada have launched a three-pronged campaign of action to stop the massive and highly controversial Cheviot open-pit coal mine . Spanning a width equivalent to that of Alberta’s capitol, Edmonton, Cheviot would strip the heart out of a nationally significant wildland, located adjacent to Jasper National Park.




Newfoundland Pesticide Regulations

The government of Newfoundland asked for public comments on a discussion paper it has released about the province's pesticide control regulations. Their public consultation process included meeting with many industry stakeholders. The paper may be accessed at

Write to or call 1-800-563-6181 and ask the Newfoundland government to ban cosmetic pesticide use. Your address, name and phone number must be included in the submission.

New Brunswick Forests Threatened by Report

New Brunswick's government, along with the forestry companies which hold licenses to cut on New Brunswick's Crown Land, has commissioned a report that is friendly to industry but not the environment. The Jaakko Poyry report makes recommendations such as doubling the area of tree farms on crown lands, harvesting in special management zones to increase wood supply in the short term, and having private auditors rather than government monitor industry activity. We need to insist that the NB Government reject this report. Visit for more information or to send a pre-written fax to Keith Ashford, Minister of Natural Resources.

Despite a very short comment period of two weeks that included the Easter holiday two submissions to the Nova Scotia government were made:

New guidelines for the application of sewage sludge on private land to replace the moratorium currently in place are going to be implemented. We requested the moratorium be continued.

A new 50 megawatt gas electric turbine is proposed at Tufts Cove on Halifax Harbour without the required provincial EA. In our submission we requested the Province follow its own regulations and implement demand side management to meet the requirements and comply with the Kyoto commitment.

Links between Lynn Lake Manitoba and Sydney Nova Scotia

A linkage of two contaminated communities, Lynn Lake Manitoba and Sydney Nova Scotia was facilitated by the Sierra Club of Canada when we took part in a meeting with five Manitoba government ministers requesting that action be taken on the 2.3 million tons of mine tailings in Lynn Lake Manitoba that is impacting the community.



Michipicoten Bay

The longest stretch of essentially undeveloped shoreline remaining in the Great Lakes is about to be segmented by a U.S. quarry operation. Potential impacts include water quality and woodland caribou habitat. Letters to the Ministry of the Environment urgently needed.

Please see:

New Member Orientation Session on Wednesday, June 9th in Toronto's Metro Hall from 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm

At this session you will learn about: The Sierra Club of Canada's history and the organization today · Our effective environmental conservation campaigns · Our EcoCertification environmental training program, and how you can participate · Our upcoming environmental education programs · getting involved in any or all of these areas

Name Change

The Eastern Canada Chapter has asked the Sierra Club of Canada Board of Directors for permission to change their name at the Annual General Meeting this May. If approved by the Board, our new name will be the Ontario Chapter of the Sierra Club of Canada. The purpose of this is two-fold:

1) To help clear up the confusion caused by having both an Atlantic Canada Chapter and an Eastern Canada Chapter; "Ontario Chapter" clearly represents the people and environments of the Province of Ontario.

2) To help our Quebec Group develop a province-wide identity in its transition to Chapter status. The Sierra Club of Canada - Quebec Group (the correct French translation being "Le Club Sierra du Canada - Groupe Quebec") will still have access to and support from the Ontario Chapter, to lead towards the formation of a "Quebec Chapter".

All contact information will remain the same until further notice ... stay tuned!`



Prairie Chapter launches Pesticide Free Yards Campaign

On May 1st the Sierra Club of Canada - Prairie Chapter will host a Healthy Lawns & Gardens Symposium at the Stanley A. Milner Library. See our website for more information: go to the 'campaigns' page.

Castle Wilderness tour continues

Our Community Outreach Coordinator, Brenda Heyer is busy delivering our educational slideshow on the Castle Wilderness to northern Alberta communities. For more information or to book a slideshow for your group or community contact Brenda at or 780.439.1160

Volunteer opportunities and upcoming events

Prairie Chapter Monthly Meetings: Last Wednesday of every month at Hostelling International 10647-81 Avenue in Edmonton.  Come and learn about our campaigns and volunteer opportunities. All meetings feature a guest speaker.

Check our website for updates and upcoming events:

Shifting Gears: Sustainable Mobility for Western Municipalities

The Prairie Chapter is a partner organization for this exciting conference. Check it out at?

Get Out There! Chapter and Group Outings

Check out the Chinook Group web page for our exciting list of spring and summer outings!



Grassroots Environmental Story Contest 2004

The Sierra Club of Canada, BC Chapter is accepting submissions for our Grassroots Environmental Story Contest 2004. British Columbia has one of the world's most creative and powerful grassroots environmental movements. Gripping, heartwrenching and hilarious stories abound of citizens putting themselves on the line to protect threatened wilderness and endangered species. Here’s your chance to share your story and win great prizes!  Contest details and all submitted stories can be found on our website. Read the stories and vote for the People's Choice award at 

Dramatic Ads Target BC Government’s Poor Environmental Record On Earth Day

Apr 22, 2004 (Vancouver, BC) Today several conservation organizations marked Earth Day by releasing a failing report card for the BC government’s past year of environmental decisions, together with billboard and bus shelter ads in Vancouver and Victoria to draw attention to the issue.

Fisheries decision threatens sockeye runs on B.C.’s South Coast

Victoria (April 23, 2004) Sierra Club of Canada, BC Chapter is calling yesterday’s decision by Fisheries and Oceans Canada (DFO) to delay emergency listing of Sakinaw and Cultus Lake sockeye under the Species at Risk Act (SARA) a virtual extinction order.



SYC Continues to collect success stories on Campus Sustainability

SYC is preparing to launch its national database of campus sustainability successes. We are still looking for those "most sustainable" stories. The top 6 stories will win free registration to our 2004 Sustainable Campuses Conference. For more info, or to submit a story go to

Host School for SYC's 6th Annual Sustainable Campuses Conference Chosen

After a very tough selection process, we are happy and excited to announce that the conference will be held at the University of Manitoba. More details on the conference will be coming shortly!

SYC Welcomes Tim Murphy to our team

Tim started with us on April 21st and will be working as the coordinator for our Community Youth Action project. Tim can be reached at the SYC National office or though his email

SYC hosts an evening discussion of corporations who make KILLER PROFITS

Speakers include Elizabeth May, James Fournier and Zani Showler along with a local Socially Responsible Investment expert. May 6th, from 7-9pm at the University of Ottawa. For more details check out

SCC GREEN GAZETTE is a monthly electronic publication of Sierra Club of Canada. Thank you to all contributors to this publication.  

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