February 11th, 2014

Federal and provincial thoughts:

From David Suzuki, and worth sharing:

(Today) is Budget Day in Canada. It’s when the federal government lays out its plans for your money– which programs and services it will introduce or expand and which it will cut or shut down.

Budgets are about choices–choices about what kind of country we are and what kind of things we value as a society. So while a lot of coverage will focus on what is or isn’t in this year’s budget, it’s important to look at this federal budget as a continuation in a long line of choices.  So let’s ask: “What choices have been made so far?”

Clearly, the answers aren’t good.
» 1.5 billion in cuts to the environment by 2016.
» 5 oil spill response offices closed across Canada.
» 8.4% cut to rail transportation safety.
» 99% of rivers and lakes now exempt from federal regulations.
» $56 million in cuts to Canada’s food inspection system.
» 35 government libraries closed.
» More than 5,000 job losses at the Canadian Food Inspection Agency, Health Canada, Fisheries and Oceans and » Agriculture Canada over the next three years.
» Over $298 million in government advertising since 2009-2010.
» » » » » All while federal fossil fuel subsidies add up to more than $1.38 billion.

These budget choices paint a picture, and it doesn’t look good for the health of our communities and the people and places we love.

(The) federal budget will represent another set of choices about what kind of Canada we are leaving for our children and generations of children yet to come.

And he is only discussing scientific and environmental choices!

Later this week, the first of several Thursday afternoon provincial legislative committee meetings regarding the high capacity well issue is taking place:

Thursday, February 13, 2014 Standing Committee on Agriculture, Environment, Energy and Forestry
1:30PM   Coles Building   –   Pope Room 

Topic: The committee will receive a briefing on the subject of deep well irrigation from Hon. Janice Sherry, Minister of Environment, Labour and Justice and Attorney General; Jim Young, Director of Environment; and Bruce Raymond, Manager of Watershed and Subdivision Planning.

These are open to the public as spectators, as those of you who attended ones in previous years regarding Plan B or fracking know; the public sits off to one side and is expected to be quiet.   

This committee is not meeting next Thursday, February 20th, but they are on the 27th, when the Citizens’ Alliance and the group it help form regarding this issue will have a few minutes before the committee.  (The group is called the Coalition for the Protection of PEI Waters, and has representatives from most of the Island groups opposed to the moratorium being lifted.)

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