A multi-year study by the federal government has produced a troubling report card on the health of Canada's marine environments, with major changes detected in all three oceans.
Vanishing sea species, warming water temperatures and a new wave of contaminants have struck Canada's marine ecosystems, according to the document from the federal fisheries department.
The 38-page report was released, without fanfare, this summer.
The information surfaces as Canada joins delegates from more than 190 countries in Japan for the two-week-long UN biodiversity conference. Countries are expected to negotiate new targets to protect the world's ecosystems and save species from extinction.
One biodiversity expert calls the report card a reminder of how Canada has failed to live up to the UN's modest 2002 goal of reducing species loss.
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OCTOBER 7, 2010 EDMONTON — The Joint Review Panel should not approve TOTAL’s Joslyn North tar sands mine, said Sierra Club Prairie, in its final submissions today at the ongoing hearings. After days of expert testimony and cross-examination, Total’s proponents were unable to deny the negative environmental impacts of their new mine proposal. The evidence presented by NASA scientist Dr. James Hansen pertaining to climate change impacts, Petr Cizek pertaining to the gaps in accounting for cumulative negative effects, and Dr. Bill Donahue regarding water contamination were particularly condemning.... Read more »
Response of Honourable Gail Shea, Minister of Fisheries and Oceans to Open Letter Requesting Stop to Oil and Gas Exploration in Gulf of St. Lawrence
Dear Ms. Gorman:
Thank you for your correspondence of September 14 and 16, 2010, regarding the Gulf of St. Lawrence oil and gas regulatory regime.
I share your views regarding the importance of the Gulf of St. Lawrence marine ecosystem and the value it holds for the many communities that have relied upon it for generations. Like many Canadians, I have been deeply concerned by the accident that has taken place in the Gulf of Mexico and would not want to see a similar accident take place in Canada's marine waters.
Domestically, Canada has a strong regulatory regime overseeing all offshore oil and gas activities occurring in federal or jointly shared waters. This regime is specifically aimed at ensuring high standards for safety, environmental protection and sound management of petroleum resources.
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Two Calgarians and one Ontario aboriginal will help decide the economic future of coastal B.C. They've been appointed to assess one of the most controversial energy projects in the province's history.
Their recommendations could determine whether federal policymakers approve plans by Calgary-based Enbridge Inc. to build a pipeline from Alberta's oil sands to the west coast, and then ship fossil fuels on supertankers to Asia. The proposal carries huge environmental risks. It also revives a fiery economic debate.
How do you develop a pristine eco-system? Or do you develop it at all?... Read more »
Can a bunch of green snappers save the Great Bear?
The International League of Conservation Photographers hopes so.
For a few weeks now, its snappers have been deploying themselves across Canada's Great Bear Rainforest, documenting its wild nature and the people who live in, and sometimes off, the forest.
I had the privilege of visiting the Great Bear, on the coast of British Columbia, about four years ago, for a radio series on sustainable forestry.
It is vast, still, full of understated life; simply, one of the most beautiful places I have ever seen. "Privilege"? Absolutely.
The League's members clearly feel the same way; but they have a purpose in saying so.... Read more »