Carol Linnitt's blog

DeSmog Canada Named as Finalist for Two Canadian Online Publishing Awards

The 2016 finalists for the Canadian Online Publishing Awards have been announced and Tweet: .@DeSmogCanada Nominated for 2 Canadian Online Publishing Awards alongside @MacleansMag @HuffPostCanada @TorontoStar http://bit.ly/2cqQQNbDeSmog Canada has made the cut in two categories — alongside Maclean’s Magazine, the Toronto Star, The Huffington Post, the Winnipeg Free Press and the National Observer.

In the Best Blog category, DeSmog Canada is nominated for its coverage of the indigenous youth suicide epidemic and its relationship to natural resource development.

Also featured in the nomination is DeSmog Canada’s coverage of the Mount Polley mine disaster and the provincial government’s failure to levy any charges or fines against the company responsible and our coverage of Canada’s enormous untapped geothermal energy potential.

In the Best Video Content category, Disturbing the Peace: The Story of the Site C Dam has been selected as a finalist.

Trudeau Silent as B.C. First Nations Take Site C Dam Fight to Federal Court

A caravan of Treaty 8 First Nations fighting the Site C dam arrived in Ottawa Tuesday, calling on Prime Minister Justin Trudeau to halt the $9-billion project they say violates treaty rights.

The group arrives on Parliament Hill after a cross-Canada journey that brought them to the Federal Court of Appeal in Montreal on Monday, where a legal challenge by the West Moberly and Prophet River First Nations was heard.

Tweet: ‘Anyone who reads the environmental report can see the #SiteC dam is an indisputable threat to our rights’ http://bit.ly/2cWb11z #bcpoliAnyone who reads the environmental assessment report can see that the Site C dam is an indisputable threat to our rights,” Roland Willson, chief of the West Moberly First Nation, said.

Feds Appoint Chair of B.C. Industry Group to Panel Reviewing Environmental Assessment Process

The federal government has appointed the founding chair of a vocal B.C.-based industry advocacy group to a four-member panel tasked with reviewing Canada’s environmental assessment process.*

The panel is part of Prime Minister Justin Trudeau’s attempt to make good on his campaign promise to restore credibility to environmental reviews of major energy projects — but the appointment calls into question the credibility of the panel. 

Tweet: New EA review panel member leads an industry advocacy group w close ties to @BCLiberals http://bit.ly/2cH6u5H #bcpoliThe appointee, Doug Horswill, is the founding chair of Resource Works, an industry advocacy group with close ties to the BC Liberals that aggressively advocates for the interests of extractive industries in B.C.

Meet The Forestry Town Striving to Become Canada’s First Geothermal Village

(Valemount, B.C.) — Tweet: Town of #Valemount wants to reinvent itself as a #renewable energy leader http://bit.ly/2b4X9iG #geothermal #bcpoliA forestry town is working to re-invent itself as a renewable energy leader with a project that promises community revitalization from the ground up.  

The mountain village of Valemount, British Columbia, located along the Rocky Mountain trench is eyeing the nearby Canoe Reach hot springs — one of the hottest surface hot springs in Canada — as a source of geothermal heat and renewable electricity generation.

Valemount used to be a typical northern forest town,” Silvio Gislimberti, head of the Valemount Geothermal Association, told DeSmog Canada. “But now we would like to create a geothermal industrial park.”

An old mill that shut down in 2007 provides a near perfect location for Borealis Geopower, the company working with the community to make something of the region’s geothermal potential.

Craig Dunn, chief geologist with Borealis Geopower, said Valemount is one of the best-known hot spots for geothermal development in all of Canada.

The resource opportunity is pretty incredible all the way down the Rocky Mountain trench, including opportunities like Radium and Fairmont, which are all a part of the system.”

Valemount has a “competitive advantage” according to Gislimberti.

Increased Oil Tankers, Coal Exports a Threat to B.C.’s Struggling Resident Killer Whale Populations

Residents of the Salish Sea region spanning B.C. and Washington State were horrified recently at a photograph taken of a Southern Resident killer whale that appeared undernourished, with ribs visibly protruding from his side.

That idea that local killer whales might be starving is central to new research by the Raincoast Conservation Foundation that found Tweet: #Orca whales in southern BC are severely affected by depleted salmon runs & shipping vessel disturbance http://bit.ly/2aSEpow #bcpolikiller whales in southern B.C. are severely affected by depleted salmon runs and shipping vessel disturbance.

The lower Fraser River is one of the most important Chinook salmon runs and watersheds for Southern Resident killer whales,” Raincoast biologist Misty MacDuffee told DeSmog Canada.

We are compromising those salmon at every stage whether it is their early life history or their marine survival or their route to spawning grounds.”

Raincoast’s research has found the number of resident killer whales is highly correlated with the number of Chinook salmon.

Mount Polley Mine Disaster Two Years In: ‘It’s Worse Than It’s Ever Been’

Thursday marks two years since the Mount Polley mine disaster in Likely, B.C. where a tailings pond collapse spilled 25 million cubic metres of mining waste, laced with contaminants like arsenic, lead and copper, into the once-pristine Quesnel Lake, a major salmon spawning ground and source of drinking water.

To mark the occasion, B.C. Minister of Energy and Mines Bill Bennett issued a press release praising the government’s world-class mining standards, saying the province is now “at the forefront of global standards for the safety of [tailings storage facilities] at mines operating in this province.”

We’ve taken a leadership position and have done all we can to ensure such a failure can never happen in B.C. again,” Bennett said.

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