Showing posts from February 26, 2014

Alberta doctor tells U.S.: Canada is ‘lying’ about tar sands’ health effects

Read the original article here.

[American Senators told that oil sands are linked to a huge spike in cancer, despite Canadian government claims. *RON*]

Mychaylo Prystupa, Posted: Feb 26th, 2014

A northern Alberta doctor warned U.S. Senators on what he says have been the devastating health impacts of the tar sands on families – effects, he says, that have been willfully “ignored” by the Canadian and Alberta governments.

“I appeal to you to keep up the pressure – this is an ongoing tragedy. A total disgrace,” said O’Connor, Wednesday in Washington, D.C.

He cited statistics for rare cancers – of the bile duct for example – that have shot up 400 times for what is considered normal for a tiny community, such as Fort Chipewyan – which is downstream, to the north of the oil sands.

From space, North Korea is a sea of darkness

See the original posting here.

[At night, North Korea looks like Europe might have in around 800 AD. *RON*]

By David Wogan | February 26, 2014 | 1

I never tire of satellite images, and especially those of North Korea at night. Take a look at the latest image by astronauts aboard the International Space Station. South Korea and China are readily visible – their cities and industries lighting up the night sky. But in between…. is that an ocean?

Not an ocean in the literal sense, but perhaps in terms of an open expanse of… nothingness. Except we know millions of people live and work in North Korea. During the day a satellite image would reveal roads and cities and settlements. But at night? Darkness.

Want more? See North Korea by night from 2011 and 2012.

Props to: Image Science and Analysis Laboratory, NASA-Johnson Space Center. “The Gateway to Astronaut Photography of Earth.”

US patient as Canada tries to 'liquidate' oil, gas resources, researcher says

See the original article here.
[In other words, Canada's and British Columbia's planned levels of LNG exports threaten our own energy security. *RON*]

By Mark Hand, SNL Financial, February 18, 2014

Aside from seeking to "liquidate" its energy resources as quickly as possible, Canada does not have a coherent energy policy, according to David Hughes, president of the consulting firm Global Sustainability Research Inc. and a fellow at the Post Carbon Institute.

Canada is pushing hard to produce its oil and gas resources and then export the supplies to the most attractive markets without any consideration of its own long-term energy needs, Hughes said in a recent interview. "The U.S. is far more conservative in that regard than Canadians," he said, referring to both the relatively smaller amount of LNG exports that have been approved by the U.S. Department of Energy and the ongoing U.S. ban on oil exports.

The British Columbia government, for example, has made expor…

RMR: Fair Elections Act

Feds get top Teddy award for wasteful spending

Read the original article here.

[Austerity? That's only for plebeians. *RON*]

By The Canadian Press, Posted: 02/26/2014

OTTAWA - The federal government has been given a dubious award for spending millions of tax dollars to promote a job grant that doesn't exist.

The Canadian Taxpayers Federation is awarding its Teddy Award for wasteful federal spending to Employment and Social Development Canada.

Former Toronto Pan-Am Games CEO Ian Troop wins the provincial award for getting a salary of over $550,000 while overseeing an event that is $1.1 billion over budget.

Vancouver's TransLink gets the municipal award for building a $4.5 million parking lot that almost no one uses.

This is the 16th year that the awards have been announced by the CTF to highlight the waste of tax dollars.

The awards, which are a small pig statues, are named for Ted Weatherill, a former federal appointee who was fired in 1999 over his expense claims, which included a $700 lunch for two.

Taxing The Rich Not A Drag On Economic Growth: IMF Paper

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[I've sent this to both Christy Clark and Stephen Harper. Straight from a bastion of neoliberal economics. *RON*]

By Julian Beltrame, The Canadian Press, 02/26/2014

OTTAWA - A new paper by researchers at the International Monetary Fund appears to debunk a tenet of conservative economic ideology — that taxing the rich to give to the poor is bad for the economy.

The paper by IMF researchers Jonathan Ostry, Andrew Berg and Charalambos Tsangarides will be applauded by politicians and economists who regard high levels of income inequality as not only a moral stain on society but also economically unsound.

Labelled as the first study to incorporate recently compiled figures comparing pre- and post-tax data from a large number of countries, the authors say there is convincing evidence that lower net inequality is good economics, boosting growth and leading to longer-lasting periods of expansion.

In the most controversial finding, the study concludes that re…

TransCanada found non-compliant in safety audit

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[As noted the review was only launched because of a whistle blower, and the NEB itself is totally unrepresentative, including many industry insiders, no environmentalists and no Northern residents. *RON*]

A National Energy Board audit of TransCanada -- the company behind the proposed 1.1 million barrels per day Energy East pipeline and the 830,000 bpd Keystone XL pipeline -- has found that the company is non-compliant in four areas:

Kinder Morgan slammed for 'accidentally' omitting oil pipeline maps in federal application

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[Parliament asked to require Texas company to "re-start" its application after it neglected to upload oil pipeline maps to NEB website for people to see. By the way, in case you've forgotten the previous name of Kinder Morgan, they used to be the people that everyone loved to hate at Enron! *RON*]

Mychaylo Prystupa, Posted: Feb 25th, 2014, The Vancouver Observer

Kinder Morgan was harshly criticized in the House of Commons Tuesday for not filing a complete application with maps for its Edmonton-to-Burnaby oil pipeline -- a project that may disturb dozens of homes through several B.C. cities, depending on the path.

“These are people in charge of a $5 billion construction project, and they ‘forgot’ to include their maps? Absolutely extraordinary,’" Kennedy Stewart told the Vancouver Observer on Tuesday.

“It’s a 150 metre-wide corridor going through the city."