For Immediate Release
November 22, 2010
Canadian Civil Society Demands Canadian Mining Companies Be Held Accountable for Overseas Abuses
36 civil society organizations have signed a letter condemning the Canadian government’s failure to pass Bill C-300, which would have held Canadian mining companies accountable for overseas violations of human rights and environmental standards.
Bill C-300, the Corporate Accountability of Mining, Oil or Gas in Developing Countries Act, was tabled by Liberal Member of Parliament (MP) John McKay in February 2009. On October 27, 2010, the bill was narrowly defeated in the House of Commons by a vote of 140-134. If the bill had passed, it would have ensured the withdrawal of public funds and political support for Canadian companies that violated human rights and environmental standards.
Polaris Institute's Executitve Director Tony Clarke has been in South Korea this week to protest the latest G20 summit.
Follow this link to watch a Euronews interview with Tony Clarke at the mass mobilization that took place today in Seoul: Tony Clarke Interview
For Immediate Release
Polaris Institute Director Tony Clarke in Seoul for G20 Summit
November 9, 2010 – This week, Polaris Institute Director Tony Clarke will be in South Korea as part of the global resistance to the latest G20 summit in Seoul. Clarke will be in South Korea to participate in alternative actions to the G20 along with a growing network of organizations, activists and social movements who are organizing to confront the illegitimate and undemocratic summit process.
While the G20 meetings do not begin until November 11th, The Peoples’ Week of Action in Seoul is bringing together people to discuss another way for the world to move forward that is apart from the dominant neoliberal model that has caused so much inequality and injustice. This alternative forum will be hosting workshops and roundtables on subjects dealing with alternatives to the global economy, agriculture and trade, gender justice and the climate crisis.
This week, The Polaris Institute will be participating in the People's Week of Collective Actions to confront the G20 Summit in Seoul.
This call to action is from the the 'Our World is Not for Sale' (OWINFS) network. The Polaris Institute is an active participant in this worldwide grouping of organizations, activists and social movements fighting the current model of corporate globalization embodied in global trading system. Click here to see OWINFS' program of activities for the G20 summit in Seoul.
20 COUNTRIES ALONE CANNOT DEFINE THE DESTINY OF THE ENTIRE WORLD
For System Change and an End to Business as usual, Let's build another world!
For Immediate Release
Polaris Institute and the Canadian Federation of Students statement regarding Concordia University’s dealings with Nestlé and PepsiCo
October 27, 2010 - Concordia University administration is meeting this week with two of the largest corporations in the world – PepsiCo and Nestlé – to talk about bottled beverages. Nestlé is on campus today to discourage the administration from banning the purchase and sale of bottled water on campus while PepsiCo is meeting this Friday to sign a new multi-year exclusive beverage contract with the university.
Nick Buxton, Sepetember, 2010 (Original Post) - There is a photo of the Bolivian water war that is almost as iconic as the unknown hero who defied the tanks in Tiananmen Square. It shows a solitary indigenous woman, with plaited hair and pleated skirt, launching a slingshot against an implacable line of armed police.It symbolises the valiant resistance of the people of Cochabamba who succeeded in April 2000 in throwing out the Californian multinational company Bechtel that had privatised their water and pushed rates sky-high.
Tony Clarke, Toronto Star, September 21, 2010 - This week, the Alberta government is launching a campaign in Ontario to defend Alberta's mega oilsands development against a growing chorus of public criticism of the project's environmental and social impacts.
Three Alberta cabinet ministers — Energy Minister Ron Liepert, Environment Minister Rob Renner and Intergovernmental Relations Minister Iris Evans — will be in Toronto and several southwestern Ontario cities along with senior oil and gas officials to make their sales pitch on the economic benefits of the Alberta oilsands, highlighting the spinoff jobs generated in this province.
Nathan Vanderklippe, The Globe and Mail, September 16, 2010 - The Obama administration is moving to tighten its scrutiny of oil pipelines after U.S. lawmakers revealed that Enbridge Inc. had years of warning about hundreds of potential problems on the line that ruptured in Michigan in July.
Under proposed new rules submitted to Congress on Wednesday, U.S. authorities would increase the maximum fine for pipeline violations causing death to $2.5-million (U.S.) – more than double the current level – and add 40 inspectors and enforcement positions, a nearly one-third increase from current levels.
Although looming midterm elections make it unlikely that it will soon become law, the proposal comes as lawmakers directed strident new attention toward Enbridge, currently facing two downed pipelines and questions about the reliability of its decades-old network.
For Immediate Release
August 18, Ottawa, Ontario – On the heels of its endorsement of a July ad campaign aimed at branding Alberta as one of the world’s dirtiest energy producing places to visit, the Polaris Institute welcomes Corporate Ethics International’s re-think Alberta campaign encouraging people in the United Kingdom to think twice about visiting Alberta.
Today, eleven digital ads highlighting the environmental and human rights catastrophe caused by the Alberta tar sands were placed around London by Corporate Ethics International. The billboards, which will be accompanied with strategic web-based advertising, are designed to raise awareness about the well documented impacts of the Alberta Tar Sands by asking Britons not to contribute to the problem.
July 28, 2010--The news of an Enbridge pipeline spilling 20,000 barrels (3 million litres) of crude oil from the Alberta tar sands into a tributary of Lake Michigan is disturbing, but sadly not surprising.
Enbridge has a questionable track record across Canada and United States of recurring pipeline leaks that have caused serious environmental damage and harm to workers. Between 1999 and 2008, across all of Enbridge’s operations there were 610 spills that released close to 132,000 barrels (21 million litres) of hydrocarbons into the environment. This amounts to approximately half of the oil that spilled from the Exxon Valdez after it struck a rock in Prince William Sound, Alaska in 1988.
The recent spill in Michigan is the largest spill to occur on an Enbridge pipeline in the United States in the last ten years. Enbridge’s largest spill in Canada in the same time period occurred in Alberta in 2001 when 23,900 barrels (3.8 million litres) spilled into the environment.