Canada Environment

What's Next For B.C. Park Amendment Act?

Andrew Weaver | Posted 06.02.2014 | Canada British Columbia
Andrew Weaver

There are guidelines over assessing what kind of activities are to be allowed in B.C. parks. However, they are not law -- they are regulations, and they can be changed by the ministry without any public consultation, public debate, or public scrutiny. The passing of Bill 4 means that the law protecting our parks has been weakened, while the ministry has increased its power and adopted a "trust us" approach.

Spirit Bears Are Safe Thanks to Youth Leaders

Simon Jackson | Posted 06.01.2014 | Canada Impact
Simon Jackson

The campaign to save the spirit bear is a full-fledged movement, owned not by the Youth Coalition, but by millions around the world. And having done all we can to take the issue this far, it is up to all of us, as individuals, to take on the responsibility of continuing to make sure that the spirit bear isn't just safe, but will forever be wild and free.

Food Packaging Trends That Tread More Lightly on the Planet

Ian Lifshitz | Posted 05.27.2014 | Canada Impact
Ian Lifshitz

As environmentally conscious consumers increasingly demand more sustainable packaging, we are seeing significant innovation in food industry packaging. With that, we see five emerging trends that we expect to continue and grow in coming years.

Why Canada Should Invest in Beer, Not Tar Sands

Mike Hudema | Posted 05.25.2014 | Canada Politics
Mike Hudema

The "beer economy" employs more than 163,000 people. In fact 1 out of every 100 jobs in Canada is in beer. A report out late last year suggests that 44 cents of every dollar spent on beer goes to the government in taxes ($5.8 billion), making buying beer almost a civic duty.

Seems the Fraser Institute Didn't Quite "Get" My Letter to John Kerry

Elizabeth May | Posted 05.24.2014 | Canada Politics
Elizabeth May

The HuffPost blog from the Fraser Institute's Senior Director, Natural Resource Studies, Kenneth Green, set out to make me look uninformed based on my submission to the U.S. State Department on the proposed Keystone pipeline. From his first words, it was pretty clear he didn't grasp the concept of writing a letter.

Elizabeth May's Fact Sheet Is More of an Opinion Sheet

Kenneth P. Green | Posted 05.21.2014 | Canada Politics
Kenneth P. Green

Recently, Green Party leader Elizabeth May orchestrated an open letter to United States Secretary of State John Kerry, urging the U.S. to reject the Keystone XL pipeline. In her note, Ms. May states that she sent Mr. Kerry "4 facts about Keystone XL." Unfortunately, two of Ms. May's facts aren't actually facts, and two of her facts are so lacking in context as to constitute merely factoids.

Caring for Canada's Waters: Understanding Water Health

David R. Miller | Posted 05.21.2014 | Canada Impact
David R. Miller

Despite the best efforts of citizens and watershed groups actively caring for their local waters across the country, we have no consistent way to measure water health. That leaves us in the dark, unprepared to do what's necessary to care for our waters. It leaves us without the information we need to understand the impacts and trade-offs of development decisions, restoration projects and legal reforms.

Top 5 Dangerous Toxins Hidden in Your Home

Dr. John Dempster | Posted 05.20.2014 | Canada Living
Dr. John Dempster

I often mention that it is not about being perfect in avoiding every toxin -- this is an impossible task in today's world. However, it is important to be aware of toxic sources in your living/working space and reduce or eliminate as many as possible. Combining a reduction & detoxification strategy has never been more important than it is today.

Geoengineering Is Not a Solution for Climate Change Anymore

David Suzuki | Posted 05.19.2014 | Canada
David Suzuki

Because nature doesn't always behave the same in a lab, test tube or computer program as it does in the real world, scientists and engineers have come up with ideas that didn't turn out as expected. We're now facing the most serious unintended consequence ever: climate change from burning fossil fuels. Some proposed solutions may also result in unforeseen outcomes.

Why My Next Car Will Be Electric and Yours Should Too

Jessi Cruickshank | Posted 05.17.2014 | Canada Impact
Jessi Cruickshank

I've always been passionate about the environment. In Grade 6, I started an anti-litter campaign in my elementary school called "Clean Up Your Act" -- I was that kid. When I was 11 years old and telling kids to clean up their trash, I never would have believed that I would drive an electric car in my lifetime. But now the technology exists, it works, and it's more popular than ever.

Canada's Cities Are Growing, So Infrastructure Must Grow Too

David Suzuki | Posted 05.12.2014 | Canada
David Suzuki

Despite being a vast land of mountains, forests and ice, Canada is an urban nation. Over 80 per cent of us live in large centres like Montreal, Toronto and Calgary, as well as rapidly growing communities like Regina, Surrey and Markham. This increasing concentration of people in cities is consistent with rapid urbanization over the whole planet.

Why I Work to Keep Smokestacks Away From Schoolyards

Carl Duivenvoorden | Posted 05.10.2014 | Canada Impact
Carl Duivenvoorden

I was raised on a dairy farm in Belledune, a small community on New Brunswick's North Shore. By the time I showed up to school in the fall of 1968, the schoolhouse was bordered by a smelter on one side and a fertilizer plant on the other. I started hearing a little voice inside me saying, "Do something!"

The Ecological Human

J.B. MacKinnon | Posted 05.05.2014 | Canada Living
J.B. MacKinnon

Only this kind of person can inhabit nature deeply enough to change our troubled relationship to nonhuman life, to observe carefully enough the changes we will continue to make, and to truly love the return of the wild as a formidable presence in our lives.

Measuring Progress with GDP Is a Gross Mistake

David Suzuki | Posted 04.28.2014 | Canada Business
David Suzuki

Governments, media and much of the public are preoccupied with the economy. That means demands such as those for recognition of First Nations treaty rights and environmental protection are often seen as impediments to the goal of maintaining economic growth. The gross domestic product has become a sacred indicator of well-being. Ask corporate CEOs and politicians how they did last year and they'll refer to the rise or fall of the GDP. It's a strange way to measure either economic or social well-being. Whatever we come up with, it has to be better than GDP with its absurd emphasis on endless growth on a finite planet.

Where Have All the Monarchs Gone?

The Nature Conservancy of Canada | Posted 04.22.2014 | Canada
The Nature Conservancy of Canada

When I was a young girl, seeing monarchs flit around was as common as hearing the songs of the meadowlarks and the chipping of ground squirrels. I was...

Top 15 Climate-Inspired Pick-Up Lines Just in Time for Valentine's Day

Mike Hudema | Posted 04.15.2014 | Canada Impact
Mike Hudema

Yesterday the creative folks at the Canadian Youth Climate Coalition launched a very innovative twitter campaign to help raise funds for Power Shift - a youth led convergence on climate change. Check out some of the #climatepickuplines hilarity.

Tar Sands Communities Flee Homes to Escape Emissions, Panel Told

Mike Hudema | Posted 04.14.2014 | Canada Alberta
Mike Hudema

I can't imagine how it would feel after I've seen my cattle die, my daughter almost fall down the stairs because of chronic headaches and dizziness, and my family get sick to the point we had to leave our farm and move into our parents basement. And then to be told that it's not the constant tar sands emissions that are the problem, but my attitude to the oil and gas industry.

'10 Reasons Neil Young Is Right About The Tar Sands'

Mike Hudema | Posted 03.18.2014 | Canada Alberta
Mike Hudema

To say that rock legend Neil Young has been making waves on his ACFN 'Honour the Treaties' tour would be an understatement. His comments about the horrors of the tar sands have made front-page headlines, set social media ablaze, and have brought out more than a few attacks mostly from stalwarts of the oil industry.

We Can Disagree Mr. Harper and That's Okay

Kevin Grandia | Posted 03.17.2014 | Canada Politics
Kevin Grandia

Prime Minister Stephen Harper needs to figure out that not everyone is going to agree with him and his government's policies -- and that's okay. Rock legend Neil Young is making his way across Canada this week on a high-profile concert series in support of First Nations who oppose further expansion of oil sands extraction into their lands. Harper, through his spokesperson, responded to Young's concerns with empty talking points, reiterating that the natural resource sector remains a "fundamental part of our country's economy."Okay. Thanks Captain Obvious. Why is it so hard for the Prime Minister to speak with people who disagree with him?

Harper Greeted With More Protests On B.C. Tour

CP | Dirk Meissner, The Canadian Press | Posted 03.09.2014 | Canada British Columbia

MILL BAY, - Prime Minister Stephen Harper hiked a historic trail Tuesday with about 50 Scouts from Vancouver Island, but the serenity of his peaceful ...

Climate Change Isn't Just Going to Go Away Overnight

Carl Duivenvoorden | Posted 03.05.2014 | Canada Politics
Carl Duivenvoorden

It's nice to imagine that the great environmental challenges of our time will mystically be solved by outside forces so that we can just keep doing what we are doing to the Earth that sustains us. Alas, that is an impossible hope.

Budgeting By Stealth

John McKay | Posted 02.19.2014 | Canada Politics
John McKay

Surplus budgeting is a worthy goal; however, the means by which the Government gets there has to be transparent. Increasing El premiums beyond sustainment and reducing eligibility is not transparent. Sale of undisclosed assets is not transparent. Lapsing budgets by stealth is not transparent.

December Is a Time to Review the Status of Canada's Endangered Species

The Nature Conservancy of Canada | Posted 02.18.2014 | Canada Impact
The Nature Conservancy of Canada

For those of us who are interested in the field of conservation biology, this time of year prompts us to be more thoughtful about lists of a different kind: the Committee on the Status of Endangered Wildlife in Canada ceremoniously completes a review of (in overly simplified terms) Canada's endangered species list at the end of each year.

It's Time to Turn Away From the God of Economic Growth

Carl Duivenvoorden | Posted 01.23.2014 | Canada
Carl Duivenvoorden

But there's a particular god our planet has been worshipping since WWII, and there are many reasons to suggest it's time for a serious rethink. The god is "growth", specifically economic growth and the way we measure it: GDP (Gross Domestic Product).

Dear James Moore, How Is Feeding the Neighbour's Kids a Bad Thing?

Carol Ann Sokoloff | Posted 02.17.2014 | Canada Politics
Carol Ann Sokoloff

When cabinet minister James Moore recently laughed about how it was not his or the government's job to feed his neighbour's children, the country rightly responded with outrage. I have always believed that if we took the well-being of children as our highest value we would begin to make decisions that improve our communities and our planet. We would stop wars (with their devastating effects on children), stop wasting finite resources and start considering long-term effects of our actions including our treatment of the environment.