DeSmog Canada
DeSmog Canada ( exists to clear the PR pollution that is preventing Canadians from having sensible public conversations about critical issues around the environment, social justice and the economy. We work to clear the air and to explore solutions for cleaning up Canada's polluted public square.

DeSmog Canada seek to examine why Canadians often feel powerless to demand that government and industry focus on what’s really important: developing more effective public policies and transitioning to a healthier, more sustainable economy.

Entries by DeSmog Canada

Fancy a Swim in Sewage? Take a Dip in Ottawa River After It Rains

(0) Comments | Posted July 31, 2014 | 12:37 PM

Never swim in the Ottawa River if it has rained during the previous 48 hours, recommends Meredith Brown, the executive director of Ottawa Riverkeeper.

The non-profit group is raising public awareness about raw sewage pouring into the popular recreational river after rainstorms or snow melts. Making matters worse,...

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Fears of Cost Overruns, Flooding of Peace Valley Loom on Eve of Site C Dam Report

(0) Comments | Posted May 7, 2014 | 3:15 PM

Opponents of the proposed Site C dam are hoping a report from the Canadian Environmental Assessment Agency panel, to be released Thursday, will emphasize potential environmental damage from the massive dam and persuade the federal and provincial governments that the project should be scrapped.

The report from the Joint Review...

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People Without Educational Expertise Shouldn't Draft Educational Policy

(1) Comments | Posted April 7, 2014 | 7:35 AM

When artists depict the future, we should take the time to listen. What if they're warning us of something that could be avoided?

"Brawndo! It's got what plants crave!"

This slogan for the popular sports drink 'Brawndo' is the mantra of citizens in Mike Judge's 2006 film 'Idiocracy.'...

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B.C. Shellfish Die-Off Illustrates A Future We Must Avoid

(0) Comments | Posted March 25, 2014 | 8:23 PM

"10 million scallops are dead; Qualicum company lays off staff."

The Feb. 25 headline hit British Columbians like a punch in the stomach.

The shellfish industry has been an economic powerhouse on central Vancouver Island for decades, providing hundreds of jobs and millions of dollars in revenue...

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A Short History of Joe Oliver, Canada's New Finance Minister

(0) Comments | Posted March 24, 2014 | 5:28 PM

Joe Oliver, Canada's new federal Minister of Finance, made quite a name for himself during his tenure as Minister of Natural Resources. In his former position Oliver proved himself a fierce and outspoken defender of the oilsands as the economic engine of Canada. But is it just the oilsands he...

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Enbridge Covers Northern B.C. With Ads Before Kitimat Northern Gateway Vote

(0) Comments | Posted March 19, 2014 | 1:52 AM

Enbridge Northern Gateway is covering northern B.C. with ads in the run up to the Kitimat plebiscite, urging citizens to vote in favour of the company's proposal to ship oil across B.C. and on to Asia on oil tankers.

During a provincial election or initiative vote, Elections BC restricts...

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Is There Room For Big Oil In Alberta Classrooms?

(0) Comments | Posted March 12, 2014 | 4:14 PM

The province of Alberta has recently released a development plan for public schools that enlists Suncor Energy and Syncrude Canada in the creation of future Kindergarten to grade three curriculum. Oil giant Cenovus will partner in developing curriculum for grades four to 12.

The oil and gas industry's involvement in...

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When It Comes to the Environment, We're All Hypocrites

(2) Comments | Posted March 10, 2014 | 12:37 PM

Do I contradict myself?
Very well then I contradict myself,
(I am large, I contain multitudes.)

The 'I' in this passage -- from section 51 of Song of Myself, by poet Walt Whitman -- stands as a reference to the erratic...

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The B.C. Battle For Enbridge Northern Gateway Polls

(1) Comments | Posted February 20, 2014 | 4:49 PM

A strange chain of events played out in The Vancouver Sun newspaper in the past couple of weeks.

First, on Feb. 5, the newspaper ran the results of a poll commissioned by Dogwood Initiative and three other B.C. non-profit groups that found 64 per cent of British...

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Why Rex Murphy's Relationship With Oil Matters

(8) Comments | Posted February 18, 2014 | 5:06 PM

There is a brewing controversy swirling around longtime CBC commentator Rex Murphy and his relationship with Canada's oil industry.

As long time readers of DeSmog know, Murphy has been a vocal supporter of the oilsands industry and a booster of those who attack the scientific realities of climate change. (Here's...

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Nothing To Hide: Pipelines, Spies and Animal Print Underpants

(1) Comments | Posted February 11, 2014 | 8:35 PM

More and more often, we are reading in the news about the federal government and various intelligence and law enforcement agencies allegedly "spying" on aboriginals and pipeline opponents.

I am both of those things. I have no idea whether strangers are picking up shards of information from my...

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What's Good For Oil Sands Companies is Not What's Good For Canada

(4) Comments | Posted February 5, 2014 | 7:29 AM

It's up to the U.S. President to decide whether the cross-border leg of the Keystone XL pipeline is in the national interest of his country. Ultimately, his criteria are less scientific than political. Does he stand to lose more by alienating those who support or oppose the project?

With midterm...

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Canada's Petrostate Has Killed Our Reputation

(1) Comments | Posted January 30, 2014 | 2:48 PM

"Alberta is very much a petrostate," says journalist and author Andrew Nikiforuk. "It gets about 30 per cent of its income from the oil and gas industry. So as a consequence, the government over time has tended more to represent this resource and the industry that produces it, than its...

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Why is the Harper Administration Throwing Away Entire Libraries?

(18) Comments | Posted January 16, 2014 | 11:05 AM

Walter M. Miller Jr.'s classic sci-fi book A Canticle for Leibowitz tells the story of a post-apocalyptic future in which a small group of monks strive to preserve the remnants of humanity's scientific knowledge. After the destruction of civilization, in the absence of physical records of its history, humanity repeats...

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Are Neil Young's Oilsands Comments Productive or Polarizing?

(10) Comments | Posted January 15, 2014 | 3:16 PM

Neil Young's "Honour the Treaties" tour kicked off with a bang on Sunday when the ex-pat Canadian rocker ripped into the Conservative government's management of the oilsands.

Calling the oilsands a "disaster" and a "devastating environmental catastrophe" at a press conference at Massey Hall in Toronto, Young stood...

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We Must Stand Firm and Demand Safer Pipelines

(3) Comments | Posted January 15, 2014 | 10:53 AM

The recent oil train derailment and subsequent explosion in North Dakota was yet another reminder tighter regulations and more independent research on transporting oil is needed -- particularly where volatile shale oil is concerned. Last week another reminder hit close to home when a CN Rail...

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A "Fair Price" for Canada's Oil Is a Slippery Slope

(4) Comments | Posted January 11, 2014 | 4:51 AM

It's a phrase that has wafted up from the oil sands to the airwaves. It pops up in speeches by politicians and editorials by journalists: A "fair price" for Canadian oil. The key to this, we are told, is pipeline access to "tidewater" (another marketing term adopted by media and...

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The Day I Found Out the Canadian Government Was Spying on Me

(15) Comments | Posted November 21, 2013 | 11:34 AM

November 19, 2013. A Tuesday. The day started out sunny, but hail fell out of the sky in the afternoon. It was a Victoria day like any other until I found out the Canadian government has been vigorously spying on several Canadian organizations that work for environmental protections and democratic...

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Industry Should Cover Social Cost of Oilsands, Experts Say

(6) Comments | Posted November 20, 2013 | 1:50 PM

It was less than six months ago that a handful of energy companies resorted to selling off portions of their stake in the oil patch after failing to garner the kind of investor support they needed to fund major projects.

The costs of development in the oilsands is...

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Canada Massively Fails to Meet Copenhagen Targets, Calls it "Progress"

(2) Comments | Posted October 27, 2013 | 9:07 PM

Canada's carbon emissions in 2020 will be 20% per cent higher than Harper government's promised reductions under the 2009 Copenhagen Accord. More importantly, Canada's emissions will be 66 per cent to 107 per cent higher than what's actually required to do its share in meeting the 2C global warming target...

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