Canada

The sunlight filters through, warming the surface of a frozen lake. (c) Michal Osmenda, Brussels

The Fish

James Morris-Knight
| 29th September 2017
Fiction for Friday: Through a fictional short story about the underwater inhabitant of a Canadian lake, JAMES MORRIS-KNIGHT explores the loss of tradition, crime and industry in North America.

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Monarch butterfly sipping nectar from milkweed. Photo: Sherri VandenAkker via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Monarch butterflies down over a quarter in one year

The Ecologist
| 10th February 2017
It's been another disastrous year for North America's Monarch butterflies, with the insect's population down 27% in a single year. The sudden decline is blamed on severe winter storms in Mexico, and the impacts of GMO crops, herbicides and insecticides on US farms.

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Sorry mate, nothing doing: the Court of Justice of the European Union in Luxembourg. Photo: Transparency International EU Office via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

We can still stop the toxic EU-Canada trade deal in its tracks

Kevin Smith
Jean Blaylock
| 24th November 2016
The European Parliament just voted against referring CETA, the EU's toxic trade deal with Canada, for legal scrutiny by the European Court of Justice, write Kevin Smith & Jean Blaylock. But this astonishing decision comes with an important silver lining: 258 MEPs voted in favour, building a platform from which to defeat CETA altogether in the main vote in February.

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Caleb Behn. Photo: Caleb Behn / Fractured Land.

Caleb Behn: 'After oil & gas, no amount of money can restore your fractured land'

Jen Stout
| 24th November 2016
The jobs and quick money that fracking can generate may seem initially attractive, indigenous Canadian activist Caleb Behn told Jen Stout on his recent visit to Scotland. But after decades of oil and gas production, the ineradicable legacy is of fractured landscapes and long-term pollution. 'My land is bisected, divided, by pipelines, roads, well sites, pads, all that. It's really hard on my heart.'

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Stop CETA Luxembourg make their views known, 17th October 2016. Photo: Friends of the Earth Europe via Flickr (CC BY-NC-SA).

Rebel MEPs demand legal scrutiny of CETA's ‘corporate court' system

Oliver Tickell
| 18th November 2016
With the EU Parliament voting next week on CETA, the EU-Canada trade deal, 89 MEPs are demanding that its system of 'corporate courts' must first be verified by the European Court of Justice as compatible with existing EU law. But pro-CETA parliamentary leaders are trying to block all debate in the run-up to the vote.

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EU policy was made today, not by the Commission or Parliament, but by the Brussels regional government officially based at the medieval town hall on the city's Grande Place. Photo: Frank Friedrichs via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Brussels defeats toxic EU-Canada trade deal, CETA

Oliver Tickell
| 24th October 2016
The city of Brussels, capital of Europe, has joined with other Belgian regions to defeat the CETA 'free trade' deal between the EU and Canada, in an unprecedented victory for civil society and campaigners against the EU's 'by the corporations, for the corporations' trade agenda.

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Global action day against TTIP, CETA & TiSA, 18th April 2015 in Berlin. Photo: Cornelia Reetz / Mehr Demokratie via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Canada-EU 'TTIP' trade deal, CETA, down - but not out

Nick Dearden
| 18th October 2016
The EU Council today blocked the progress of CETA, the Canada-EU trade deal, writes Nick Dearden. It's a dramatic reversal for the transatlantic 'free trade' agenda, with the unpopular TTIP US-EU agreement already close to death. But negotiators aren't giving up on their aim to push CETA through, no matter what. Our fight goes on!

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Native youth and supporters protest in New York against Dakota Access Pipeline, 7th August 2016. Photo: Joe Catron via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Standing Rock and the long struggle for Indigenous freedom

Stanley L. Cohen
| 21st September 2016
While the confrontation at Standing Rock has galvanized Indians and non-native supporters from across the continent, writes Stanley L. Cohen, it's but a symptom of a much deeper crises facing several million Indians holding on to endangered traditions and cultures that predate 'our' arrival by several thousand years. We may call Indian people sovereign. But it's all a grand, perverse lie.

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Muskrat Falls on 23rd October 2011, before dam construction commenced. Photo: innovationtrail via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

Controversial dam robs, poisons Canada's indigenous Innu people

Colin Samson
University of Essex
| 14th July 2016
A new dam on indigenous lands at Muskrat Falls will join a network of other hydroelectric projects spanning Innu territories across the Labrador-Quebec peninsula, writes Colin Samson. The continual violation of Innu rights imperils their ability to enjoy healthy and sustainable lifestyles - and follows in a long tradition of indigenous land theft in North America.

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The TTIP Trojan Horse joins Green / EFA MEPs and hundreds of citizens from across Europe protesting against the Transatlantic Trade and Investment Partnership (TTIP), February 2015. Photo: greensefa via Flickr (CC BY).

TTIP is on the rocks. Let's defeat these toxic trade deals!

Guy Taylor
Nick Dearden
| 4th May 2016
The TTIP EU-US trade deal has finally hit the rocks with massive popular opposition on both sides of the Atlantic gaining serious political traction, write Guy Taylor & Nick Dearden. There's now a good chance that TTIP will be defeated - but first we must make sure that CETA, the equally toxic EU-Canada 'Trojan Horse' deal, bites the dust.

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Maude Barlow at the Peoples Social Forum 2014. Photo: Ben Powless / Peoples Social Forum via Flickr (CC BY).

Maude Barlow: combating CETA, TTIP's scary Canadian cousin

Nick Dearden
Global Justice Now
| 29th April 2016
Maude Barlow, Chair of the Council for Canadians, has dedicated her life to fighting injustice, and so-called 'free trade' deals in particular. In this interview with Nick Dearden, Maude explained how CETA, the Canada-EU trade and investment agreement, is every bit as dangerous as TTIP, but has somehow escaped the same level of media and campaign focus - and what we can do about it.

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CETA could act as a 'backdoor agreement' for US corporations even if TTIP fails - no wonder they are trying to push it through!  Demo against TTIP & CETA in Hamburg, February 2015. Photo: Foto: Chris Grodotzki / Campact via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

CETA Canada-EU 'free trade' deal could come into force without vote

Oliver Tickell
| 15th April 2016
The Stop TTIP coalition is warning that under a 'stealth clause' in CETA the trade deal could come into force without a single parliamentary vote - including its ISDS provisions allowing investors to sue governments in secret courts. US corporations would then be able to sue EU nations - even if TTIP fails.

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At risk - Laguna Verde in Paramo Santurban, Colombia. Photo: Grupo Areas Protegidas CORPONOR via Wikimedia Commons (CC BY-SA).

Colombia: there's no place for clean water under 'free trade'

Pete Dolack
| 14th April 2016
The latest country to be hooked under 'free trade' agreements is Colombia, writes Pete Dolack, sued for tens of billions of dollars by US and Canadian gold mining companies for valuing its national parks and the high-altitude Andean wetlands that provide 70% of the nation's water above the profits of foreign corporations. Free trade or clean water? You can't have both.

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It's our future! Photomontage: Beyond GM.

Opening up the debate on GMOs to the voices of the future

Pat Thomas
| 13th April 2016
An exciting new project has been launched to give children a chance to join in the GMO debate, writes Pat Thomas. With young people speaking up and becoming more aware of food, health and environmental issues, they deserve the platform to voice their concerns and join in a wider global network of youth working for positive change in the world they will inherit.

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The Denesuline have long suffered and protested against the treatment of their people from industrial organisations causing damage to their territories and the environment. Photo: ItzaFineDay via Flickr (CC BY)

Sacred land, unholy uranium: Canada's mining industry in conflict with First Nations

Committee for Future Generations
| 30th March 2016
For Saskatchewan, uranium is an important part of the economy, but for the province's indigenous peoples, the land is everything. It is filled with relationships between beings who dwell together in an interconnected web. Their traditional ecological knowledge is not just a set of terms or data, but a deep, broadly-viewed reality which contains systematic respect for all creation.

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Dairy farmers protest in Brussels, October 2009. Photo: Teemu Mäntynen via Flickr (CC BY-SA).

Dairy farmers' uprisings lead the way to a democratic world food system

David Miller
| 17th February 2016
The increasingly militant protests by dairy farmers against low prices forced on them by the corporate 'free market' represent serious and effective resistance against the 'free trade' agenda being forced on the world by neoliberal governments, writes David Miller. They are the first steps to building a new global food system that respects food, people, culture and environment.

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Orca watching in Puget Sound with Jim Maya. Photo: Robbert Michel via Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND).

Sewage treatment essential to save Puget Sound orcas

Dr Sierra Rayne
| 20th December 2015
Orcas from Puget Sound and the Strait of Georgia are under threat,in large part due to toxic organic compounds in the marine food chain, writes Sierra Rayne. To give them a fighting chance, the nearby community of Victoria, British Columbia must install advanced sewage treatment - rather than just dump its wastewater largely untreated into the orcas' ocean home.

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Blondie - one of a rough half dozen coyotes that freely roam Presque Isle State Park, Erie, PA. She probably carries a mixture of genes from dogs and wolves as well as coyote, but that does not mean she's of a new species. Photo: Dave Inman via Flickr (CC

Who believes in the big bad coywolf?

Roland Kays
North Carolina State University
| 20th November 2015
Novel canids are hunting the forests of Eastern North America from Florida to Labrador, writes Roland Kays, where hybrids of coyote, dog and wolf have evolved into highly competitive forms. But is it the evolution of new species? If left in long term isolation, perhaps - but that's not about to happen. Genetic mixing and evolution still have a long way to run.

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Ribbon cutting ceremony for the new solar installation in Little Buffalo, Alberta. Photo: Greenpeace Canada via Youtube.

Energy democracy: Lubicon Cree build a solar dream in a tar sands nightmare

Melina Laboucan-Massimo
| 15th November 2015
An 500-strong Indigenous community in Alberta, the heart of Canada's environmentally catastrophic tar sands industry, is fighting back against the pollution, writes Melina Laboucan-Massimo - by cutting themselves adrift from dependence on fossil fuels, and starting up their own solar power station: a vital first step towards building a just and sustainable society.

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German protestors opposing TTIP and CETA in Berlin, 10th October 2015. Photo: Jakob Huber / Campact via Flickr (CC BY-NC).

EU-Canada CETA trade deal is a back door for US to sue EU - even if TTIP fails

Maude Barlow
Global Justice Now
| 30th October 2015
There's been a big fuss about the 'ISDS' clauses in the TTIP trade deal that would allow US corporations to sue the EU and its member states for 'lost profits', writes Maude Barlow. But ISDS is already in CETA, the already negotiated EU-Canada trade deal - and nothing would be easier than for US companies to use it as their 'back door'. We must make sure CETA is rejected at its final hurdle.

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