Kristen Shane, Hill Times, July 26th, 2010 - The House of Commons Environment Committee killed a report it was drafting on the oil sands last month because Conservative members wanted to hide testimony showing the government has failed to live up to its environmental protection responsibilities and the opposition parties were too poisoned by partisanship to reach consensus, say some witnesses who testified during the study.
But Conservative MPs say their government is acting on its obligations and the testimony is public knowledge.
"I think it's a total coverup," said University of Alberta ecology professor and water expert David Schindler last week of the Environment and Sustainable Development Standing Committee's decision to scrap tabling a formal report to the House on its more than two years of study of how Alberta oil sands projects affect the quantity and quality of surrounding water bodies.
The following article written by Andrew Nikiforuk provides a good explanation for why the Government of Canada's Environment and Sustainable Development Committee decided to destroy a report on the impacts of tar sands projects on water.
More information on the impacts of the Alberta tar sands industry on water can be found here.
Why did a parliamentary committee suddenly destroy drafts of a final report on tar sands pollution? Here's what they knew.
By Andrew Nikiforuk, 15 July 2010, TheTyee.ca
Just two weeks ago the Standing Committee on Environment and Sustainable Development abruptly cancelled a big report on the tar sands and the project's extreme water impacts. The parliamentarians even destroyed draft copies of their final report.
Thursday July 8, 2010 marked the 3,000th day of action against the Coca Cola plant in Plachimada in the Indian State of Kerala where the local population has been struggling against the company over its water takings.
Agitation against Coke plant crosses 3,000 days
G. Prabhakaran, 12 July 2010, The Hindu PALAKKAD - The agitation against alleged exploitation of groundwater by soft drink major Hindustan Coca-Cola Beverages Pvt. Ltd. at Plachimada, a remote village in Perumatty grama panchayat in Chittur taluk, completed 3,000 days on Friday.
The agitation has been described as a struggle by the local people to establish their right to natural resources such as soil and water and a fight to protect their livelihood of agriculture.
Bill O'Driscoll, Pittsburgh City Paper, June 3, 2010 - It's called World Environment Day. But critics say speakers at host city Pittsburgh's key WED event over-represent one small part of the world -- the corporate part often implicated in abuses of environmental and human rights.
The June 3 "Water Matters!" Global Water Conference is intended as the serious, issues-oriented face of WED, a United Nations-inspired program whose highlights include an attempt to set a record for kayaks and canoes on the river.
Water is a political issue as well as an environmental one: Fresh water is increasingly scarce globally, and getting scarcer as population grows and industrialization increases. One debate is whether access to water is a human right -- requiring governments to ensure such access -- or simply another commodity, like oil.
Tim Johnson, McClatchy Newspapers, May 27, 2010, MEXICO CITY — It's a simple warning — don't drink the tap water — and Mexicans take it to heart as much as any foreign tourist does.
Mexicans drink more bottled water than the citizens of any other country do, an average of 61.8 gallons per person each year, according to the Beverage Marketing Corp., a consultancy. That's far higher than Italy, and more than twice as much as in the United States.
A rising mistrust of tap water is behind the thirst for bottled water. Other factors are also at play, however, including clever advertising campaigns by multinational corporations and the failure of the Mexican government to provide timely data on water safety.
Carly Weeks, Globe and Mail, May 26, 2010 - Another strike against bottled water.
New findings show that several types of bottled water sold in Canada contain high levels of bacteria, raising questions about the cleanliness and quality of bottling plants.
The health concerns add to the backlash against plastic-bottled water that has led several cities and school boards to impose bans.
Canadian researchers from C-crest Laboratories Inc., a pharmaceutical product-testing lab in Montreal, tested nearly a dozen brands of bottled water and discovered that 70 per cent had high levels of heterotrophic bacteria. The findings were presented Tuesday at a meeting of the American Society for Microbiology in San Diego.
“This amount of bacteria is alarming, as if we are ingesting a cup of culture,” said Sonish Azam, a researcher involved in the study who works at C-crest.
New Report Exposes Enbridge Inc’s Destructive Gamble on Eve of Annual Meeting of Shareholders
OTTAWA, ON – In advance of Enbridge Inc.’s Annual Meeting of Shareholders scheduled for Wednesday, May 5th, the Polaris Institute and the Indigenous Environmental Network are releasing a new corporate profile of the company. In the profile, Enbridge Inc’s dirty tar sands gamble is exposed as potentially dangerous in terms of its impacts on the environment and First Nations communities.
Bolivia’s president says developing nations must not be shut out of international negotiations for combating the greatest environmental issue of our time.
Evo Morales, LA Times, April 23, 2010
Today, April 22, is Earth Day. All over the world, people are celebrating Earth Day in a myriad of ways, drawing attention to the ecological threats that plague the planet and what can be done to prevent this disaster. In Cochabamba Bolivia, for example, following the failure of the climate summit in Copenhagen last December, over 20,000 people from around the world have come together to chart a new course for climate justice and Mother Earth in a three-day assembly organized by the Bolivian government.