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SCC Green Gazette

October 2005

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

National Office
Atlantic Canada Chapter
Ontario Chapter
Prairie Chapter

BC Chapter

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You can make a donation to the Sierra Club of Canada through our secure website. You can target your donation to our national work, to a specific chapter or to the Sierra Youth Coalition.

Celebrating the lives of two extraordinary women!

November 21 2005 is the date selected for a special SCC reception to celebrate the achievements of Senator Mira Spivak and SCC Executive Director, Elizabeth May. SCC will present Senator Spivak with its Lifetime Achievement Award - this prestigious ward honours a person in public life who has contributed significantly throughout his or her lifetime to environmental protection and restoration. At the same event, we will celebrate the recent nomination of Elizabeth May as an Officer of the Order of Canada. Tickets will go on sale shortly. Please contact Sara Krynitzki for more information (



Congratulations Amelia Clarke!

Amelia Clarke, President of the Board of Directors for Sierra Club of Canada was honoured with the Laureate prize for the Graduate Student category at the Forces AVENIR Gala held September 29, 2005.

Forces AVENIR aims to recognize, honour, and promote the commitment of young people in projects which enrich knowledge, arouse the desire for success and for surpassing oneself, encourage the development of community thinking and thus contribute to the development of socially conscious, active and responsible citizens who are both dedicated to their community and open to the world.
It is the fifth anniversary of the awards Gala.

People and the Planet 2006

SCC’s third People and the Planet conference will be held from June 9 through June 11 2006 in Ottawa, at St. Paul’s University. Watch this space for regular updates on the exciting speakers and the stimulating conference program. Please contact Susan Paul for more information (


We are now in the final month of SCC’s annual membership competition. Thank you for your help in recruiting 228 new members as of October 7! Here are the competition standings so far:
Groups (by # of new members)
Groups (by % growth)

1. Victoria
2. Ron Burchell
3. Lower Mainland (tie)
3. Chinook (tie)
5. Quebec
6. Ottawa
7. Malaspina
8. Quadra
9. Cape Breton
10. Peel
11. Mud Creek
12. Coast Mountain
1. Cape Breton
2. Malaspina
3. Quadra
4. Peel
5. Chinook
6. Quebec
7. Lower Mainland
8. Victoria
9. Ron Burchell
10. Ottawa
11. Coast Mountain
12. Mud Creek

It’s not too late to influence the outcome of the competition - support your chapter or group by encouraging your friends, family and workmates to join SCC. Please contact Marilyn McGunigal for more information (

Good luck!

Elizabeth May Speaks…

Threat of Climate Change: Staying on the Kyoto Course

Organized by the Environmental Law Centre and Sierra Club of Canada’s BC Chapter
Tuesday, October 18th at 7pm, Murray and Anne Fraser Building, Room 159, University of Victoria
For more information email: elc at

"Can Civilization Survive Climate Change?"

October 25 at 8 p.m. in Ondaatje Hall, Marion McCain Building, Dalhousie University.
In June 1988, Canada hosted the first major international conference on climate change. The consensus statement of the scientists present began, "Humanity is conducting an unintended, uncontrolled, globally pervasive experiment whose ultimate consequences are second only to global nuclear war." The reality is that climate change is not really an environmental issue. It is about the survival of the human race. Elizabeth May asks whether we are repeating the experience of past advanced civilizations which ignored the constraints of the natural world, and perished.

November 7th to 9th - International Earth Charter +5 Gathering

A collaboration of the Earth Charter International Secretariat, the Netherlands National Committee for International Cooperation and Sustainable Development (NCDO), the Royal Tropical Institute (KIT), and Plan Netherlands.

November 10th to 12th - Responsibilities of Citizenship & Public Service -- Crisis of Challenge

Organized by Trudeau Foundation & Institute for Research on Public Policy) being held at Glendon College in Toronto. Registration information at http://www.trudeau-irpp.org Elizabeth will be a discussant for Session 5: Shared Governance & the Public Good on November 12th

November 14th & 15th - Regional Side Events for COP11

Public evening presentation in preparing Canada for COP11 Negotiations
November 14th - Regina
November 15th - Saskatoon
More details to follow in the next issue of Green Gazette.

"Climate Change, Kyoto, COP 11, and Ottawa" - Elizabeth May

Tue, Nov 22 2005 7:15 PM
Location: Mountain Equipment Coop - 366 Richmond Rd Ottawa
Contact: Graham Smart

Less than a week from the date of this talk, the most important global negotiations on climate since the 1997 Kyoto conference will open its doors in Montreal. The 11th Conference of the Parties will be combined with the First Meeting of the Parties under the Kyoto Protocol. What does it all mean? Is progress being made or are we hopelessly behind? What does science tell us about increasing severe weather events and the melting Arctic? Come and find out more.

Protecting Biodiversity

Rachel Plotkin accompanied Sierra Club of BC colleagues Lisa Matthaus and Justin Calof in early October to a meeting with the Species at Risk Coordination Office in BC to discuss management options for the recovery of the endangered Spotted Owl.
Sierra Club of Canada National Office, in coordination with CPAWS National and the Canadian Boreal Initiative has organized a one day workshop in mid-October to coordinate scientists and activists to develop a Woodland Caribou Conservation Strategy and maps to support it.

No More Subsidies to Big Oil

Imperial Oil is seeking $2 to $3 billion in federal subsidies to construct the Mackenzie Gas Project, which will fragment boreal forests along Canada’s wildest big river—the Mackenzie—and fuel further development of Alberta’s tar sands, which produces the most damaging type of oil for the global atmosphere. Imperial Oil is already fabulously profitable, with over $500 million in profits in the second quarter of 2005; the oil industry, including Imperial Oil already receives $1.4 billion in government subsidies every year.
Say no to more subsidies to Big Oil! Write, email or fax Deputy Prime Minister Anne McLellan (, 613-943-0044) and Environment Minister Stephane Dion (, 613-996-6562) and tell them to say no to more subsidies for the Mackenzie Gas Project and yes to investments in energy efficiency and wind and solar power.

Welcome new staff

National office welcomes Emilie Moorhouse, who started her new position as Atmosphere and Energy Campaigner on October 11, 2005. We are also pleased to advise that Katie Albright has accepted the position of Communications Coordinator at National office. And finally, a warm welcome to our new National office intern, Ashley Page.

We asked . . . you answered

Over 20% of our members participated in our recent Membership Survey, and those who did told us that the environmental issues they care most about are:
Air and water pollution (45%)
Climate change (44%)
Forests (27%)
Biodiversity (25%)
Wildlife (25%)
Energy (23%)

Many members made the valid comment that it's impossible for them to isolate and select specific issues because they are all interdependent.




Pesticides Forum Planning Kicks Offs September 27, 2005

Last year, the Sierra Club of Canada - Atlantic Canada Chapter “roadshow” toured municipalities in the Atlantic Region that were considering the introduction of pesticide restrictions. The information and support from Sierra Club of Canada was well received and there appeared to be widespread interest across the region in having a forum to address the common questions and concerns of municipalities. Funding for a forum has been granted by Environment Canada and planning for the event in late November is just underway. We will have speakers on a range of topics related to pesticide bylaws and there will be a particular focus on those issues that seem to be barriers for municipalities wanting to restrict the use of pesticides.
Please contact us if you would like to be on a contact list as a potential participant or would like to receive an account of the event afterwards. Gregor MacAskill will be coordinating the preparations from the SCC-ACC office in Halifax and can be reached there any time if you have suggestions for the forum.

New Sierra Club Atlantic Website!

Ashley Miller, with the help and input of the SCC-ACC Communications Committee, has worked hard to give a new format. The new website, which has a cleaner look, updated information, and easier navigation, is up now. So check it out!



Ottawa Local Group Executive Committee Meetings

Mon, Oct 10, Nov 14 & Dec 12 @ 7:00 pm
Location: 1 Nicholas Ave, Suite # 412 Ottawa
Contact: Daniel Van Vliet Email:

EcoCertification Cafe - Inside the Bottle

Tue, Oct 25 2005 7-9 pm
Location: C'est What - 67 Front Street East (downstairs) Toronto
Contact: Sandi Trillo, 416-485-9173
Sierra Club’s EcoCertification Café meets monthly at a downtown café or pub to extend the conversations that naturally begin at Sierra Club events. Books, articles and current issues provide a focus for the conversations, but if you’re not a reader, just bring your thoughts!

Who Owns Agriculture? Taking it Back? - Laura Telford

Tue, Nov 1 2005 7:15 PM
Location: Mountain Equipment Coop - 366 Richmond Rd Ottawa
Contact: Graham Smart
Increasingly, corporations are taking control of agriculture, both internationally and here in Canada. One example is the corporate promotion of genetically modified foods and the contractually imposed restrictions on seed saving. In the face of this corporate manoeuvring, organic and small-scale farmers are using organic agriculture in attempting to take back control of farming. Laura will describe these recent developments and talk about what local consumers can do to contribute to a just food system.

EcoCertification Program Team Meeting

Thu, Nov 3 2005 7-9 pm
Location: Sierra Club Office, 24 Mercer St. Toronto
Contact: Michelle, 416-960-9606
This is a monthly meeting for the EcoCertification Program Team, to plan upcoming sessions for the EcoCertification Program (
If you're interested in volunteering for the Sierra Club and/or the EcoCertification Program, please feel free to come to this meeting to learn more.

Sierra Club of Canada, Ontario Chapter Annual General Meeting

Sat, Nov 5 & Tue, Dec 6 2005 2 - 4 pm
Location: 55 John Street, Metro Hall - Room 303 Toronto
Contact: Jamie Kirkpatrick, 416-960-9606

Come out and join fellow Sierra Club of Canada members to celebrate our collective efforts on a variety of conservation campaigns.
We'll have...
- a raffle with great prizes donated from local businesses
- Sierra Club Calendars for sale

Note: The December 6 meeting may be replaced by a holiday party. Woohoo!



The New Prairie Chapter Staff!!

The Prairie Chapter welcomes our new staff. In the Summer Lindsay Telfer joined the chapter replacing Sonja Mihelcic as the Chapter Director. Shortly thereafter we were sad to see Geneva Rae leave her position as Community Outreach Officer in order to pursue her Master's Degree in the Natural Step. We wish Geneva the best of luck this year during her studies in Sweden and thank her for her tremendous work and dedication to the chapter. Luck is on the side of the chapter as we hired Meredith James to replace Geneva. Meredith, a biology student at the University of Alberta, brings tremendous experience in organizing and has already proved herself an asset to the chapter. We are excited to have her on board for the next year (and hopefully longer!).

New ExComm Members

There are lots of new faces around the chapter these days. Andrea Waywanko is not necessarily a new face to the Sierra Club of Canada, she has been our chapter representative on the Alberta Environment Network board, although she is new to our Executive as she joins the board as our new treasurer. We also welcome journalist Elisabeth Withey to the board as a new member at large and look forward to working with her in the future. We wish Doug Hutcheon best of luck as he moves westward to the lower mainland. His contributions as treasurer of the Prairie Chapter were tremendous!
For more info on our staff and executive members check out the "about us" section of our website


The Prairie Chapter is excited to launch our new Enviro 911 program this fall. Based off the successes of such programs at the BC Chapter and in the US, the program in the prairies will offer research support for citizens environmental inquiries. For more info


We are working to continue our updates and postings on our chapter website...soon you'll be able to see great photo galleries of the all the beautiful trips that SCC-PC members are taking in our region...

Chinook Group!

Take Action! In a community already burdened with highly toxic sewage lagoons, a closed-down coal processing plant, a decommissioned steel plant and a bio-medical incinerator, the federal and provincial governments have just announced that the clean up plan for the site will include the sitting of a mobile incinerator to burn the PCB-laden tar ponds sludge less than a kilometre from a university, homes and municipal water supplies. The plan will also leave 580,000 tons of the sludge in the centre of the community covered over with cement. This is quite possibly the most hazardous way to deal with the contamination and is not a final solution to the problem. No protective measures for the community are proposed and this plan to clean up the site will put an already burdened community at even greater risk.
Send an automated letter to tell elected officials how you feel about this solution. Check out for more information

Trash Talkin' - Oct 11, 2005 7:00 PM, at the Orpheus Theatre, SAIT In light of all the discussion around a curbside recycling program in Calgary, the Sierra Club is hosting an evening discussion around the Future of Recycling in Calgary.

Our guests and panelists are:

Mike Saley, head of Waste Management for the City of Calgary - Mike will be presenting the results of the Curbside Recycling Pilot Project. The pilot project included collection of everything currently collected within our depot system. It also included organic waste, which can account for up to 40% of all household waste generated. Come learn how Calgary can build on the successes of the pilot and the potential for taking it city-wide.

Rod Muir, founder of Waste Diversion Ontario - Rod is also Waste Diversion Campaigner for Sierra Club Ontario Chapter. Recycling not only helps reduce what goes into our landfills, but also has implications relating to climate change. According to Rod "...nearly half the energy we produce is used to manufacture the goods we consume and discard." Rod will present the implications reducing waste has on lowering greenhouse gas emissions and limiting climate change. To learn more visit


Join the Chinook Group for Calgary's Gorilla Run - On the heels of the Sierra Club Chinook Group’s first place victory at EcoTrek, we are aiming to make a big impression at the Calgary Zoo’s Gorilla Run. This is a chance to show that we are the most fun, and maybe the fittest, environmental organization in the area! Let’s get as many teams as we can involved! The event is a fun run to raise money for the “Diane Fossey Gorilla Fund International”, the “Orangutan Foundation Fund” as well as the “Calgary Zoo Conservation Fund”. We are looking for runners and the race organizers are looking for volunteers. for more info, or to register your team contact

November Speaker - Junior Ambassador to Brazil - Brittany McLeod, Date: Wednesday, November 2nd, 2005 at 7:00 PM

In August 2005, Brittany McLeod was selected as one of 35 young Canadians on the Junior Team Canada International Mission to Brazil. This mission was organized by the group Global Vision, based in Quebec. For two weeks in mid-August the team met with Brazilian business, government, education and youth leaders promoting Canadian products, services and partnership opportunities. Brittany's concern for the environment led her to apply for the opportunity and she embarked on the adventure with her own mission of focusing on the environment. She will join us to report on her findings, and her insight into the tools needed to become a successful global leader in protecting the environment.



Read the insightful and well-written article on the crisis in the salmon fishery.

Fishing for facts in B.C.'s salmon crisis
By Terry Glavin, Marine Conservation Adviser

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

For information or comments, to subscribe or unsubscribe, please
contact: Katie Albright, Communications Coordinator,

Sierra Club of Canada National Office