Monday, December 23, 2013

Is the Harper Government Guilty of Ecoside?

"A lengthy 2008 guide to “Meeting the Media” instructs DFO employees to “refer to the Department or the Government in your answers and do not use the personal pronoun ‘I’. After all you’re a DFO spokesperson and not an opinionated commentator.” (The guide is included in a report from Democracy Watch.)"   from: Crimes Against Ecology: is the Harper government guilty of ecoside?

Good morning again!

Last week I received the latest issue of Alternatives Magazine.  Always a good read, and covering a wide range of environment and social issues, this issue particularly has my attention.

One of the feature articles is Crimes Against Ecology: is the Harper government guilty of ecoside?

Canada became the only country to withdraw from the UN anti-drought convention in March 2013.   from: Crimes Against Ecology

Author Laura MacDonald has put in a huge amount of research and has linked articles or reports relevant to everything mentioned in the six categories of charges.  

Environment Canada scientists were shadowed and monitored by media-relations handlers at the International Polar Year conference in April 2012.     from: Crimes Against Ecology

The charge categories are:
- Promoting willful ignorance by eliminating advisory bodies and restricting data gathering.
- Preventing knowledge from reaching the public by muzzling government scientists.
- Systematically dismantling decades of environmental protection legislation.
- Limiting scientists’ ability to provide perspective by reducing environmental research funding.
- Undermining conservation and monitoring efforts by cutting funding, staff and programs.
- Obstructing and threatening environmental education and advocacy efforts.

In April 2010, 86 workers were laid off at the Canada Institute for Scientific and Technical Information, the country’s national science library and leading publisher of scientific information.    from: Crimes Against Ecology
Most of the situations listed are things I never heard of ... possibly because I don't follow every environment site around ... but just as likely that the Harper government does a good job of keeping these incidents from getting out to media.

In November 2012, the Canadian Food Inspection Agency successfully lobbied to have the research lab at the Atlantic Veterinary College-University of PEI stripped of its international credentials for revealing evidence of infectious salmon anemia in BC salmon, thereby threatening export.                from: Crimes Against Ecology: is the Harper government guilty of ecoside?   [My comment: the government said the revelation would threaten exports.]

And some of them I had heard about.

Canada became the only country to withdraw from the UN anti-drought convention in March 2013.      from: Crimes Against Ecology

I hope I channeled Rick Mercer not too badly in a rant about the situation just above:

MacDonald tells us that the constitutions of 100 countries already recognize that people have a right to a healthy environment. Both Ecojustice  and the DavidSuzuki Foundation  are working to have this right  enshrined in the Canadian Charter of Rights and Freedoms.

I hope you've got some time to read through the Crimes Against Ecology article and to explore the Alternatives Journal site.  You might find the site is one you want to visit regularly, or even treat yourself and subscribe to the journal.  It's a keeper in its paper format!  And I'm not just saying that because I'm such a paper lover!

As always, thanks for letting me speak and for reading.

As always, very best regards.  I hope you have a Christmas that isn't over busy, some time with friends or family and head into the New Year well.

Why's Woman

From its website:
A\J, or Alternatives Journal, is Canada’s Environmental Voice, delivering in-depth news and bright ideas about national and global environmental issues. Featuring thoughtful analysis by the nation’s foremost environmental thinkers, plus profiles of inspiring leaders and sustainable living ideas to steal, A\J offers a vision of a more sustainable future and the tools needed to take us there.
Published since 1971, A\J is Canada’s oldest environmental magazine, and is the official publication of the Environmental Studies Association of Canada.  

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