Sadly, the Grand Manan Whale & Seabird Research Station lost its great whale champion yesterday (January 3, 2021). Laurie Murison passed away from complications of the cancer that she had been bravely battling for several years. She will be greatly missed by those on Grand Manan, in the Bay of Fundy, and by the conservation community as a whole.

Laurie worked tirelessly for marine conservation and maritime history in the Bay of Fundy for over three decades. She will be remembered for her strength, her determination, and for her love of whales, especially the North Atlantic Right Whale. Laurie constantly had her hands in many pots, leaving most of us wondering how she managed to accomplish everything – but she did. From the Research Station to the Swallowtail Keepers Society, and the Grand Manan Museum, Laurie was always working to educate those around her, to support wildlife conservation, and to preserve history. Less well-known among Laurie’s talents were also an ability to cut a cedar shingle into any shape, her skills at rebuilding anything out of old and recycled materials, and making the best lobster rolls ever.

Laurie’s lifelong work was to be paid tribute by an honourary doctorate from UNB this winter. It is certainly a fitting honour for someone who dedicated her life to the greater communities of the region – both people and wildlife.

We will miss you, Laurie, but your spirit will always be with us, especially on the water.

-Grand Manan Whale & Seabird Research Station

Commentary by Jim Emberger, Telegraph Journal, Dec. 16, 2020

“Distant hypothetical targets are being set, and big speeches are being given. Yet, when it comes to the immediate action we need, we are still in a state of complete denial.”

These are the recent words of young climate activist, Greta Thunberg, concerning progress toward dealing with the climate emergency. Unfortunately, she could be talking about NB Power’s recent release of its 25-year Integrated Resource Plan (IRP). While claiming to pay attention to the climate crisis, the utility’s plans belie those claims.

First, NB Power plans to extend the life of the coal burning Belledune electricity generator, one of the province’s largest emitters of carbon dioxide, to 2041: more than 10 years past its federally mandated closure.

To put this plan in context, progress reports submitted in preparation for next year’s climate summit show the gap between our actual greenhouse gas emissions and our stated targets continues to grow.

Simultaneously, a number of new climate models show that we potentially could pass the 1.5 C “minimally safe” increase in global temperature later this decade, and pass the more dangerous 2 C increase in the early 2030s. This prediction is bolstered by the announcement that, according to NASA, last month was the hottest November on record. What’s more, 2020 is likely to be the hottest year on record, a fitting conclusion to what will likely also be the hottest decade.

This should lead us to conclude that our future climate efforts must be even more rigorous. As the United Nations notes, the “world’s wealthy will need to reduce their carbon footprints,” which “will require swift and substantial lifestyle changes.”

By extending the Belledune plant, we will continue to pump large amounts of carbon dioxide into the atmosphere well after we’ve passed the likely point of no return on climate chaos. NB Power alleges that it can cut emissions elsewhere, but its claims are based on questionable assumptions, and it is hard to imagine where it can cut at the scale necessary.

For instance, emphasis is put on maintaining or increasing natural gas usage as a low carbon emission alternative, ignoring the now-accepted science that leaking methane emissions along the entire gas supply chain makes gas no better for the climate than coal.

The IRP also mentions that another low-carbon plan is to develop small modular nuclear reactors, a technology that currently exists only on paper. It faces hurdles of technology, safety, cost and procuring investment. But the salient point is that it will not likely be available until 2030, and later before it can be widely dispersed.

To sum up, as we face an already serious climate crisis that is due to significantly worsen in the next decade, NB Power’s plans are to continue to use a high-polluting, out-of-date technology for 20 years, and invest in a new technology that won’t become useful until after much climate damage has already occurred.

The IRP notes that proven, cheaper alternatives exist: namely renewable energy from sun and wind. Why aren’t they being pursued as the main pillars of our energy future?

The excuse that they are too intermittent becomes less viable with every passing day, as advances in energy storage are being made at a dizzying pace.

What’s more, our province has a unique opportunity to take part in the “Atlantic Loop,” a project that would bring stable and low or even no-carbon energy from hydro dams in Quebec and Newfoundland and Labrador. In concert with renewables, our energy supply could be ample, stable and potentially exportable to New England.

Though questionable, NB Power’s plans are not as off-base as the advice offered in a recent op-ed (“Oil and gas are a missed opportunity for Atlantic Canada,” Dec. 7) penned by researchers with the Canadian Energy Centre, an Alberta government corporation which was created to promote the interests and reputation of the provincial oil and gas sector.

Its authors claim that now is the time for New Brunswick to start a natural gas and oil industry. This is strange advice coming from Alberta, a province where the oil and gas industry has plummeted – even before the pandemic – with huge losses of investment, industry bankruptcies, decimated tax and royalty payments, the loss of many thousands of jobs and a multi-billion dollar tab for oil and gas industry cleanup.

They assume that we will continue to use fossil fuels, despite the climate crisis. Therefore, they argue, it makes more economic sense to produce our own rather than buy from elsewhere. This argument that we ought to knowingly contribute to the looming climate crisis is bizarre, particularly given that so many scientists argue that any new fossil fuel project is an act of economic and environmental self-harm.

As people finally pay attention to scientists about COVID-19, one can only hope that this enlightened attitude will spill over to the much larger, and more dangerous, climate crisis.

The time for rhetoric about long-range goals and inadequate plans to achieve them is long past. As Greta Thunberg’s clear-headed logic indicates, we need reality-based action, and we need it now.

–Jim Emberger is the Spokesperson for the New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance.

Cocagne – Les Couleurs du Pays vous offrent leur première vente de Noêl et vous accueillent à cet effet à la boutique éphémère d’ici le vendredi 18 décembre 2020 au bureau du Groupe de développement durable du Pays de Cocagne (GDDPC), 118 Cocagne Cross à Cocagne.

Savez-vous que l'industrie de la mode est la 2e industrie la plus polluante après le pétrole? Savez-vous que les pollinisateurs sont en déclin en raison de la perte d'habitat? Savez-vous qu'on peut teindre la laine naturellement?

Les Couleurs du Pays vous offrent leur première vente de Noêl et vous accueillent à cet effet à la boutique éphémère au bureau du GDDPC. Il s'agit de kits de laine teinte naturellement avec des plantes par des gens d'ici. Nous avons fait beaucoup de recherches et d'essais cette année et voici le fruit de ces expériences. Nous avons semé, planté, récolté et teint avec fleurs, feuilles, écorces et racines, fruits, branches et champignons. La laine est teinte entre autres avec les plantes suivantes: pelures d'oignons, verge d'or, pastel, garance, tagètes, gaillet, champignon phéole de Schweinitz, vinaigrier et pommier. Le design a été conçu par les gens d'ici également et vous recevez un patron pour les kits de tricot de tuque et mitaines.

Plusieurs articles sont en vente:
  • kit de tricot pour une tuque Méli-mélo
  • kit de tricot pour une tuque Pomme
  • kit de tricot pour des mitaines Cocagne
  • kit de laine à bas
  • ballot pour hooker
  • laine à bas
  • grosse laine lopi
  • de la poterie de Suzanne Babineau et
  • des tisanes de Jocelyne Gauvin, Ferme Spirale
La boutique est ouverte les jours de la semaine entre 9 et 15h. Si vous avez des questions, communiquez avec Wiebke Tinney au gddpc@nb.aibn.com ou par téléphone 576-8247.

Le but des Couleurs du Pays est de cultiver, récolter des teintures naturelles de manière durable pour redécouvrir et transmettre ce patrimoine dans le bassin versant de Cocagne. Plus d'informations: https://ecopaysdecocagne.ca/fr/projets/785-couleurs-du-pays


Renseignements:
Wiebke Tinney
Directrice générale
118 Cocagne Cross, Cocagne NB
(506) 576-8247
gddpc@nb.aibn.com


hats


Le territoire ni cédé ni abandonné des Wolastoqey/des Mi’kmaq/des Peskotomuhkati/Fredericton
– Dans son nouveau plan pour l’avenir du réseau électrique de la province, Énergie NB n’établit pas le réseau fiable, abordable et renouvelable que les Néo-Brunswickois veulent, et dont ils ont besoin, pour faire face aux conséquences toujours plus désastreuses du changement climatique. Les auteurs du plan intégré des ressources (PIR; un plan d’offre en fonction de la demande) sur 25 ans des services publics, publié le vendredi 4 décembre, proposent de conserver les émissions de gaz à effets de serre (GES) au niveau actuel, soit aux alentours de 3 millions de tonnes par année jusqu’en 2040. Ce plan est inadéquat face à l’aggravation du changement climatique et à l’objectif de la législation fédérale d’atteindre près de zéro émission au Canada en moins de 30 ans.

« À l’heure où le monde fête le 5e anniversaire de l’Accord de Paris sur le climat, où le Nouveau-Brunswick fête le 4e anniversaire de la publication de son propre plan sur le climat, et où le gouvernement fédéral doit annoncer une réduction plus nette des GES d’ici à 2030, Énergie NB et notre province prétendent qu’il n’est pas nécessaire de prendre des mesures supplémentaires », déclare Louise Comeau, directrice du programme Solutions pour le changement climatique et l’énergie du Conseil de conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick.

Les plans d’Énergie NB ne reflètent pas ce que les Néo-Brunswickois ont demandé. Lors de son propre sondage, 85 % des Néo-Brunswickois ont dit à Énergie NB que la « transition du Nouveau-Brunswick vers un avenir éconergétique devait permettre de minimiser les répercussions sur les tarifs et sur l’économie ». Or, le PIR d’Énergie NB ne tient pas compte de cet aspect.

Aujourd’hui, les nouveaux projets d’énergie éolienne et solaire constituent les formes d’électricité les moins chères de la Terre. Cinq fois moins chères que le charbon, cinq fois moins chères que l’énergie nucléaire et trois fois moins chères que le gaz naturel. Ces technologies, qui ont beaucoup évolué au cours des 10 dernières années, sont plus fiables que jamais, surtout lorsqu’on les associe aux nouveaux réseaux de transmission et aux technologies d’entreposage d’énergie.

De plus, suite à un récent travail de recherche mené par le Conseil de conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick (CCNB) et l’Ecology Action Centre (EAC), on a constaté que les plans d’approvisionnement en électricité qui favorisaient une électricité plus propre étaient concurrentiels. En fait, sur les 24 les plans d’approvisionnement en électricité examinés, 80 % des scénarios qui favorisaient l’efficacité énergétique et les énergies renouvelables étaient soit moins chers, soit un tout petit peu plus chers que les scénarios qui préconisaient des technologies conventionnelles polluantes.

« Nous avons besoin d’un réseau électrique conçu pour mettre notre portefeuille à l’abri, nous préserver des coupures de courant provoquées par les phénomènes météorologiques extrêmes et protéger notre santé de la pollution atmosphérique et du changement climatique », affirme Louise Comeau. « Au lieu de cela, les responsables de notre plan d’approvisionnement en électricité provincial ignorent la climatologie et s’apprêtent à brûler des combustibles fossiles polluants et financièrement risqués pendant des décennies. »

Nous pouvons faire mieux. C’est maintenant, et pas dans trois ans, comme prévu, que nous avons besoin d’une mise à jour réaliste du plan d’approvisionnement en électricité du Nouveau-Brunswick. Nous avons besoin d’un nouveau processus fondé sur une vaste participation des intervenants afin d’élaborer des scénarios pertinents. L’ensemble des études et des scénarios devraient être accessibles au public pour observations, comme partout ailleurs au Canada.

Pour qu’un plan d’approvisionnement en électricité soit réaliste, ses auteurs doivent protéger l’intérêt du public en visant la création d’un réseau électrique interrégional non polluant dans lequel on accorde la priorité à l’efficacité énergétique ainsi qu’aux énergies solaire, éolienne et hydro-électrique existante. Un plan d’approvisionnement en électricité réaliste doit accorder la priorité aux quartiers alimentés par l’énergie solaire, comme le projet pilote d’Énergie NB Northbranch à Moncton et les projets de communauté énergétique intelligente comme le projet pilote actuellement mené à Shediac, dont on ne fait même pas mention dans le PIR de 2020.

Il faut dès maintenant investir dans des solutions comme les mises à jour de transmission pour favoriser le commerce bilatéral entre le Québec, Terre-Neuve et Labrador, la Nouvelle-Écosse et le Nouveau-Brunswick afin d’assurer l’établissement d’un réseau électrique fiable, abordable et durable. Dans le cadre de son engagement d’éliminer le charbon et de créer un réseau électrique à 90 % sans émissions d’ici à 2030, le gouvernement fédéral offre une aide financière pour que ce genre d’investissement puisse voir le jour.

La combustion des combustibles fossiles (mazout, charbon et gaz naturel) déséquilibre le climat et nuit à la santé humaine. Si la Nouvelle-Écosse et le Nouveau-Brunswick éliminent le charbon de la production d’électricité d’ici à 2030, nous pourrons éviter plus de 125 morts prématurées, 12 100 épisodes d’asthme et 81 000 journées caractérisées par des difficultés respiratoires.

Le changement climatique coûte déjà chaque année des milliards de dollars aux familles, aux entreprises et à l’économie. Selon les chiffres d’Environnement et Changement climatique Canada, on constate que si l’on réussit à éliminer le charbon, le Canada enregistrera une économie nette de 4,7 milliards de dollars, dont 1,2 milliard de dollars en soins de santé uniquement.

Dans sa proposition, Énergie NB ignore la réalité d’une ambition croissante liée au changement climatique en omettant les politiques telles que celles qui instaurent un plafonnement des émissions, une tarification du carbone et des engagements envers les programmes fondés sur l’efficacité énergétique et les énergies renouvelables. Pire, dans son PIR, Énergie NB s’oppose à la nouvelle énergie éolienne jusqu’en 2033 au lieu de tirer parti des solutions techniques existantes, dont les liens régionaux à la capacité ferme de l’hydroélectricité et l’investissement dans les technologies de batteries, dont le coût baisse rapidement.

Dans son PIR publié le mois dernier, la Nouvelle-Écosse entend aussi prolonger la combustion du charbon jusqu’en 2040 au minimum. Si ces plans sont maintenus, la Nouvelle-Écosse et le Nouveau-Brunswick seront les dernières provinces à utiliser du charbon au Canada.

« Nos politiciens et les dirigeants de nos services publics négligent l’intérêt du public en faisant des choix qui nuisent aux Néo-Brunswickois aujourd’hui et à long terme, mais il n’est pas nécessaire que cela soit ainsi », déclare Lois Corbett, directrice exécutive du CCNB.

Selon les conclusions de deux autres études réalisées par East Coast Environmental Law pour le CCNB et l’EAC, les règles gouvernementales contrecarrent les investissements susceptibles d’aider les ménages à faible revenu à réduire leur facture énergétique, empêchent les services publics de tenir compte des coûts sociaux et environnementaux de nos choix en matière d’électricité et ne donnent aucun signal à long terme pour que nous puissions prendre maintenant les mesures nécessaires à l’instauration d’un réseau électrique sans émission au cours des 20 ou 30 prochaines années.

« Pour atteindre les objectifs liés à la modernisation de notre réseau électrique au cours des 20 prochaines années, nous avons besoin d’une réforme légale dans le domaine de l’électricité, car nous ne pouvons pas nous permettre de continuer à décevoir les Néo-Brunswickois », affirme Louise Comeau.

Pour plus d’information, veuillez communiquer avec :

Jon MacNeill, directeur des Communications, Conseil de conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick : jon.macneill@conservationcouncil.ca; 506-238-3539
Cette année, le RENB a récompensé les groupes ou personnes suivants pour leurs efforts exceptionnels dans la protection de notre environnement commun :

Prix Zephyr - Liz Smith, NB Lung : En reconnaissance de 20 ans de travail pour l'amélioration de la qualité de l'air pour les citoyens du Nouveau-Brunswick.
Prix Gaia - Verts Rivages : En reconnaissance de votre travail dans la conservation et la préservation des espèces et des habitats dans la Péninsule acadienne et au-delà.
Prix Samaqan - Vision H2O : En reconnaissance de votre travail pour préserver l'intégrité des bassins versants du sud-est du Nouveau-Brunswick en utilisant une multitude de moyens.
Prix Phoenix - Julie Reimer, Fondation du Sierra Club du Canada Atlantique : En reconnaissance de votre dévouement et de votre esprit d'initiative dans la lutte pour la sensibilisation aux questions environnementales au Nouveau-Brunswick.

Félicitations aux lauréat(e)s des prix du RENB de cette année. Bien mérité !
NB Lung
Verts Rivages
Vision H2O
Sierra Club Canada
Photo: RCMP officers block Highway 126 in Rexton on June 5, 2013. Shale gas protesters had gathered there to oppose shale gas exploration by SWN. Photo by Roy MacMullin.

The Brief

Vol. 12 No. 4 | A publication of the NB Media Co-op | December 2020/January 2021 | nbmediacoop.org

RCMP shrugs off findings it acted illegally at Rexton raid against shale gas protesters
By JIM EMBERGER

The RCMP is refusing to accept several findings made by the Civilian Review and Complaints Commission on the RCMP response to the 2013 RCMP raid on the anti-shale gas camp in Rexton, New Brunswick.

Among the Commission’s findings were that the RCMP violated citizens’ Charter Rights on issues of warrantless searches, stops and spot checks, and the retention of personal and social media data gathered by the RCMP, even after it was established that an individual was cleared of any criminal or security concerns.

The final report, released on Nov. 12, comes seven years after the New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance called for the investigation.

Without offering any new evidence to support its views, the RCMP rejected the Commission’s findings. In fact, it clearly implied that only the RCMP could judge the constitutionality of actions by its officers.

So, if it can simply dismiss the Civilian Review Commission, is the RCMP accountable to anyone outside of its own ranks?

That the report took seven years to complete is an obvious failure of the system, and emphasizes that ‘justice delayed is justice denied. Except for those who were there, few may remember much about the event beyond pictures of burning cars.

Many who testified before the Commission as eyewitnesses may read this report and marvel that some of its conclusions directly contradict their testimony. This was especially true in instances where it was alleged that the RCMP arrested Indigenous protesters, while they only dispersed nonindigenous protesters.

The Commission concluded that this did not occur, primarily because there was no supporting video evidence, and so simply resolved this issue in favour of RCMP claims. Multiple witnesses, who independently testified about such events (myself included), will not accept the conclusion that they didn’t occur, whether or not they were widespread or videotaped.

This report also cast doubts on the RCMP’s competence and judgment. The Commission found that RCMP negotiators had reached an agreement with the protesters to calm down the tense situation, just as the tactical force was finalizing the next morning’s raid. Had the two groups actually just talked with each other, the entire incident may have been avoided.

A primary reason for justifying the raid was ‘unverified rumours’ of weapons at the protestors’ encampment. Yet the RCMP’s own testimony revealed that its infiltrators, vehicle spot checks, personal searches and continuous surveillance had not turned up a single observation of any firearms. They had simply ‘heard rumours’ about weapons.

The RCMP also admitted that it made a tactical error in letting several police cars remain unmanned, which led to them being burned. The implication at the time was that they were burnt by protesters.

Credible witnesses testified that non-indigenous people, unknown to local residents, were able to approach and burn the cars and escape, without any intercession by the RCMP. As no perpetrators were ever identified, the Commission attributed the incident to a RCMP error, and they didn’t attribute the burning of the cars to the protesters or anyone else specifically.

They did, however, dismiss the possibility that it was the result of agent provocateurs, based solely on the RCMP saying so. So, incompetence or coverup? We’ll never know.

If one thinks that such speculation is a step too far, then I would suggest they read some academic research on this topic such as, Policing Indigenous Movements: Dissent and the Security State by Andrew Crosby and Jeffrey Monaghan. The book covers four Indigenous movements, concluding with the raid on the anti-shale gas camp near the Mi’kmaw First Nation of Elsipogtog in Rexton.

To quote from the book’s promotion, it “raises critical questions regarding the expansion of the security apparatus, the normalization of police surveillance targeting social movements, the relationship between police and energy corporations, the criminalization of dissent and threats to civil liberties and collective action in an era of extractive capitalism and hyper surveillance.”

It also provides context to the Commission report, which focuses solely on RCMP actions. We should not lose sight of, nor excuse, those who were ultimately responsible for this tragedy.

New Brunswick’s Alward government refused for years to engage in discussions with a united province-wide opposition, despite huge demonstrations, petitions from tens of thousands of citizens, and expert testimony. Its intransigence and obvious collusion with the gas industry, led directly to the raid at Rexton. Ironically, that may have been the event that finally doomed shale gas and spelled the end of the Alward government.

Unfortunately, current events, like the RCMP’s violent actions against Wet’suwet’en opposition to the Coastal GasLink LNG pipeline in BC, and its failure to protect Mi’kmaw fishers in Nova Scotia, illustrate that government practices that allow the RCMP and the security services to abet corporate interests (especially fossil fuels) continue unabated.

Commercial rights continue to supersede personal rights, and especially treaty rights, in a peculiar and twisted hierarchy of justice overlaying a barely hidden foundation of racism.

The RCMP’s contention that it is the sole arbiter of the correctness or legality of its actions emphasizes that it, along with the intelligence services, governments, and fossil fuel interests will learn no lessons from the Commission report. And without real accountability they never will.

Jim Emberger is the spokesperson of the New Brunswick
Anti-Shale Gas Alliance
Le Nouveau-Brunswick abrite un mélange d’habitats et d’espèces sauvages uniques qui sont très importants pour les Néo-Brunswickois et qui sont essentiels à notre bien-être. Nous voulons nous assurer que ces espaces naturels et la faune qui y vit restent protégés pour les générations à venir.  Ces espaces sauvages sont également importants pour nous permettre de nous rapprocher de la nature.

D’ici à mars 2022, nous aiderons le Nouveau-Brunswick à plus que doubler ses terres conservées, passant de 4,7% à 10% de la province – et vous pouvez nous aider aussi !

Visitez www.gnb.ca/patrimoinenaturel pour en savoir plus sur l’approche du GNB dans le choix de nouvelles zones naturelles protégées et conservées, et sur la façon dont il souhaite vous entendre.
Le Groupe de développement durable du Pays de Cocagne réitère sa demande pour une décentralisation des services de buanderie des hôpitaux afin de diminuer les émissions de gaz à effet de serre lié au transport routier. En réponse au courriel de M. Flemming en date du 23 septembre 2020 , vous trouverez en pièce jointe la lettre d’Odette Landry, co-présidente du conseil d’administration du GDDPC.

GDDPC Hospital fr 1GDDPC Hospital fr 2

No satisfaction: Chief Tremblay calls an emergency Wabanaki Confederacy meeting

 

by J.L. Deveau, Ron Tremblay, and Alma Brooks

Imagine how betrayed you would feel if you were an Indigenous person knowing your ancestors had agreed to make peace with the British on a promise made – that any Wolastoquyik (Maliseet person) would be entitled to satisfaction and reparation for any controversy, whether real or imagined – but that 300 years later, a judge reneged on that promise.

This happened after Wolastoqewi-Grand Chief Ron Tremblay and Wolastoqey Grand Council found out that the New Brunswick Department of Tourism, Heritage and Culture had begun working on the development of a Snowmobile Grooming Hub project at Mount Carleton Park, in northern New Brunswick, with no park management plan in place authorizing such a thing.

They went to court to ask for satisfaction and reparation from a judge. However Justice Petrie gave Grand Chief Tremblay and Wolastoqey Grand Council No Satisfaction (like the Rolling Stones’ 1965 hit (I can’t get no satisfaction). An appeal was subsequently filed with the NB Court of Appeal.

Since our last NB Media Co-op article was published, the NB Court of Appeal summoned all three of us to a teleconference call scheduled for Dec. 8. At that time, a judge from the high court will assess the legitimacy of our delay in perfecting (completing) our appeal filed in October 2019. If satisfied with our explanation, the judge can order us to perfect our appeal by a specific date. Alternatively, if not satisfied, the judge can dismiss our appeal.

We're facing a dilemma.

The Treaty of 1725-26 was the product of negotiations not only between two parties, Wolastoqiyik and the British, but also between representatives of a Confederacy, the Wabanaki Confederacy, and the British. "Wabanaki" means "people of the dawn."

The Wabanaki Compact (Treaty of 1725-26) was broken in Wolastokuk (Maliseet homeland). This has implications for all five nations in Wabanakiak (Abenaki, Mi’kmaq, Penobscot, Passamaquoddy, and Wolatoqiyik combined territories). Therefore, Grand Chief Tremblay is beholden to inform the Confederacy of this breach in their treaty with the British and to seek guidance from its peoples on how best to proceed.

Few people in New Brunswick realize that Wolastoqiyik never abandoned their own legal system, agreeing only to set aside their international law of private satisfaction (komucikotuwal) for those instances involving controversies with the British. The deal was that in so doing, they were guaranteed satisfaction and reparation from His Majesty’s laws.

We have two options. Option 1 is to continue with the appeal and file everything before our conference call with the NB Court of Appeal judge on Dec. 8.  Option 2 is for Grand Chief Tremblay to revoke Wolastoqewi-Grand Chief Charles Manituphike’s agreement of 1728, to seek redress before the British court system for any controversies involving the settlers and to revive instead their own legal system.

Given the risk of having the appeal thrown out by a judge from the NB Court of Appeal, Grand Chief Tremblay and the Wolastoqey Grand Council have called for an Emergency Wabanaki Confederacy meeting.

Traditionally, a Confederacy meeting takes place in person at some fixed location during mid-winter however that is not possible this upcoming winter because of the pandemic.

The Wabanaki Confederacy meeting will be held online, through the videoconference platform Zoom, on the afternoons of Saturday Nov. 21 and Saturday Nov. 28, from 1pm to 5pm Atlantic time.

The first Saturday will be focused on treaty education, the second on determining how the Grand Council and its Grand Chief ought to proceed following the No Satisfaction outcome of Justice Petrie’s ruling.

Nov. 21 features three experts: Professor Harald Prins on the history of the Confederacy and how Wabanaki spokesperson Loron Saugaaram felt duped by the British even before he signed the Treaty of 1725-26; Professor Katherine Hermes on Indigenous Northeast law and the evolution of the legal arrangements that existed between Native peoples and colonial governments in the 17th and 18th centuries; and, Professor Heather Hirschfeld on how the term satisfaction as the bastion of substantive justice in the 17th and 18th centuries was whittled down to becoming nothing more than the touchy feely expressions of the fulfillment of our carnal needs and wants.

These events are free. The general public is invited to attend the three education sessions on Saturday Nov. 21. The following Saturday, Nov. 28, is reserved just for the Peoples of Wabanaki Confederacy.

Registration is required for both days to receive the link to the online sessions via email. For additional information, please visit our Facebook event page , email Katalin.koller@gmail.com or call 1-506-260-1331.

This article was first published by NB Media Co-op on November 17th, 2020.

Dr. Jean Louis Deveau is an independent scholar, former manager of Mt. Carleton Park, and co-founder of the Friends of Mt. Carleton Provincial Park.

 

Alma H. Brooks, BA, is a Wolastoqwey Grandmother (the people of the beautiful & bountiful River) residing in the territory of EkPahak ( the place where the tide ends ) is physically, linguistically, spiritually, culturally, and biologically connected to the traditional homeland of her ancestors.

 

Ron Tremblay is his colonial birth name but is known as “spasaqsit possesom” (spuz-akw-zid  buz-za-zum) – morningstar burning. He is a citizen of Wolastokuk (Wa-lus-da-gook). Being the youngest of 10 children of the late Doris Sappier and Raymond Tremblay, spasaqsit possesom grew-up surrounded by Wolastoqey (Wa-lus-do-kway) Language spoken fluently. spasaqsit possesom credits his mother Doris and grandparents Madeline LePorte and Louise Sappier for his genuine love of Wolastoqey Language and he also acknowledges that they provided him the true teachings of life.

 

After moving to Fredericton in 1991 he befriended several Elders from local area. The two main Elders Ulsonuwit Sqot (Harry LaPorte) and Sagatay (Gwen Bear) guided him deeper into his Wolastoqey Traditional Ways. After years of involvement in various ceremonies with his teachers spasaqsit possesom gained wisdom and knowledge of “Wolastoqey way of life”. Still today, Ron practices the traditional ways of Wolastoqewiyik. In November 2016, Ron was installed as Traditional Wolastoqewi-Grand Chief. The mandate of the Wolastoqey Grand Council is to protect and preserve Wolastokuk, their non-ceded traditional homeland, waterways, ceremonies and language.

 

Content Warning: This article contains references to anti-Indigenous racism and hate crimes committed against the Mi'kmaq.
  • Indigenous-owned vehicles torched, food destroyed, and Mi'kmaw fishermen forced to barricade themselves indoors to escape violent mobs hurling rocks and racist insults. [1]
  • These were some of the shocking hate crimes committed in Nova Scotia on Tuesday night, while the RCMP watched. [2]
  • The Mi'kmaw people's right to fish is protected by the Peace and Friendship Treaties and was upheld by a Supreme Court decision. But so far, the federal government has avoided defining and protecting these treaty rights — leading to unrest and racial violence. [3]
  • Prime Minister Trudeau and Minister of Fisheries, Bernadette Jordan, have condemned these appalling acts of terrorism and hate. [4]
  • But Jean-Louis the Mi'kmaq need more than words. They’re calling on the federal government to urgently step in before the situation escalates further and someone is seriously injured or killed.
  • While this story is dominating the news, the federal government is vulnerable to public pressure. [5] If we flood their inboxes with tens of thousands of messages calling on them to protect the treaty rights of the Mi'kmaq, we could convince them to intervene and put a stop to the violent and unlawful attacks on Indigenous fishers.
  • Non-Indigenous fishermen raided a Mi'kmaq food storage facility, cut the power, poured chemicals on live lobsters, and threatened the Indigenous fishermen inside. [6]
  • Jason Marr, a fisherman with the Sipekne’katik First Nation barricaded himself inside a facility to escape the violent mob’s racist taunts and threats. He waited for the RCMP to escort him out safely but once the RCMP showed up, "they just stood there". [7] Sipekne’katik Chief Mike Sack said he couldn't believe the violent mob was getting away with terrorist acts while the police were present. [8]
  • The Mi’kmaq have a treaty protected, legal right to catch and sell fish to earn a moderate livelihood — one which includes the right for Mi'kmaw people to provide housing, food, clothing and amenities for themselves and their families. This is recognised by a 1999 Supreme Court decision and enshrined in Section 35 of the 1982 Constitution Act. [9]
  • Jean-Louis, Mi’kmaw fishermen have 250 lobster traps in the contested area, while non-Indigenous fishermen have approximately 390,000. This isn’t a dispute about over-fishing — it’s racist hate meant to intimidate Indigenous fishermen away from the waters. [10]

We must use our platform to amplify the voices and demands of the Mi'kmaq because it is the right thing to do. Send a message to Prime Minister Trudeau and Minister Jordan now.

Please check out this list of ways people can help.

To donate to people on the ground you can send an e-transfer or paypal to Sipekne'katik First Nation at monicah@sipeknekatik.ca. Please make the subject line: “1752 Moderate Livelihood”.


Aujourd'hui, nous célébrons la Journée Nationale de l'Arbre. Saviez-vous que c'est aussi le 100e anniversaire de la #Semainenationaledelarbreetdesforets ?

Il n'y a pas de meilleure façon de célébrer les arbres du Nouveau-Brunswick qu'une séance de questions-réponses avec Tracy Glynn, co-auteur de « The Great Trees of New Brunswick ».

Originaire de Miramichi et fille d'un bûcheron, Tracy Glynn a été la responsable de la campagne forestière au Conseil de la conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick de 2006 à 2018. Tracy enseigne à l'Université St. Thomas, écrit et coordonne le montage pour la NB Media Co-op, et travaille avec des défenseurs des terres à travers l'île de la Tortue, l'Indonésie, les Philippines, le Guatemala, la Colombie et au-delà.

Q : Racontez-nous comment le livre « The Great Trees of New Brunswick » a vu le jour.
R : Le forestier David Palmer a demandé au Conseil de la conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick d'écrire une deuxième édition du livre « The Great Trees of New Brunswick ». Il voulait honorer la mémoire de son ami, David Folster, qui a écrit la première édition. J'ai sautée sur l'occasion de participer à ce projet intéressant, qui me semblait être une belle façon de terminer mon mandat de responsable de la campagne forestière au Conseil de la conservation. J'ai pris contact avec Goose Lane, un éditeur de livres basé à Fredericton, pour voir s'ils étaient intéressés par la publication du livre et il n'a pas fallu convaincre, ils ont été immédiatement intéressés. David a fait le gros du travail en visitant presque tous les arbres nominés pour le livre, en prenant leurs mesures et en écoutant les histoires des nominateurs de leur grand arbre. David et moi avons passé les années 2018 et 2019 à en apprendre plus sur nos arbres et à écrire le livre.

Q : Pourquoi pensez-vous qu'il est important pour les Néo-Brunswickois de développer une relation avec nos forêts ?
R : Nos forêts sont tellement magnifiques. Nos forêts abritent 32 espèces d'arbres indigènes différentes, de magnifiques orchidées forestières, des champignons amusants, des oiseaux chanteurs, des pics et des hiboux, et tant d'autres créatures qui méritent d'être connues, aimées et protégées.

Q : La deuxième édition de « The Great Trees of New Brunswick » mettait fortement l'accent sur les espèces indigènes. Pouvez-vous nous dire pourquoi ?
R : Nous voulions nous assurer d'inclure un chapitre sur chaque espèce d'arbre indigène ainsi que sur certaines des espèces exotiques que les gens ont appris à connaître et à aimer. La première édition célébrait beaucoup d'arbres communs que les gens connaissent comme le pin blanc de l'Est et l'érable à sucre, mais nous voulions produire un guide de terrain folklorique qui permettrait aux lecteurs d'identifier tous les différents arbres de notre forêt, y compris les plus rares.

Q : Le changement climatique et les espèces envahissantes telles que l'agrile du frêne constituent des menaces importantes pour nos forêts. Comment pensez-vous qu'elles affecteront les arbres présentés dans ce livre ?
R : Les scientifiques affirment que le changement climatique et les espèces envahissantes pourraient entraîner la disparition de certains de nos arbres indigènes. Certains de nos arbres indigènes sont en danger, comme le noyer cendré. Dans le livre, nous discutons des perspectives pour chaque arbre et nous examinons comment les actions humaines affectent nos arbres.
Nous y parlons de l'agrile du frêne et des ravages qu'il cause dans les frênes de l'est du Canada et des États-Unis. Nos trois espèces de frênes indigènes sont toutes sensibles et ne présentent aucune résistance naturelle à l'insecte. Le Centre national de semences forestières à Fredericton recueille des graines de frêne à des fins de conservation génétique et l'on espère que le frêne aura un avenir dans notre forêt.

Q : Quel est votre arbre préféré ?
R : C'est une question difficile. Je pense que tous nos arbres sont uniques. Je suis continuellement étonnée par le bouleau jaune et son écorce chatoyante, le tilleul en fleurs et le mélèze laricin qui devient doré à l'automne. Si je devais choisir un arbre qui m'est spécial, ce serait un vieux pin blanc de l'Est sur la route où j'ai grandi. Connu simplement sous le nom de "pin" par ma famille et mes voisins, l'arbre aux formes asymétriques était un lieu de rencontre où l'on surveillait les ours noirs tout en dévorant des framboises. Regarder le soleil se coucher derrière l'arbre ne deviendra jamais fatiguant pour moi.

Achetez votre exemplaire de « The Great Trees of New Brunswick », 2e édition dès aujourd'hui, et assurez-vous de faire votre part pour aider à protéger nos grands arbres en prenant des mesures contre les espèces envahissantes !


Visitez le site web du Conseil des espèces envahissantes du Nouveau-Brunswick pour d'autres histoires comme celle-ci.
2020 09 04 Eurasian Water Milfoil
Kingston, N.-B. – Le Conseil des espèces envahissantes du Nouveau-Brunswick et la Coalition du bassin versant de Belleisle demandent aux plaisanciers, pêcheurs et propriétaires de chalet d'être à l'affût du myriophylle en épi dans la baie de Belleisle après que l'équipe de recherche du Dre Meghann Bruce de L’Institut canadien des rivières a observé le premier emplacement connu de cette plante aquatique très envahissante dans la région.
Les plantes ont été observées à l'embouchure de la baie près du ruisseau Kingston. "Non seulement la présence des plantes, mais aussi leur emplacement est préoccupant", déclare Kristin Elton, Directrice du CEENB. "La plante se propage par fragmentation et étant donné le nombre de bateaux qui passent par cette zone, il est très probable que des morceaux ont été cassés et transportés sur des hélices, des coques, etc. plus loin dans la baie elle-même où elle créera de nouvelles colonies".
L'équipe de recherche avait étudié cet endroit en 2018 et n'avait pas trouvé l'envahisseur, mais étant donné la rapidité qu’il s'est répandu dans d'autres parties du fleuve Saint-Jean, ce n'est pas surprenant.
La Coalition du bassin versant de Belleisle a surveillé les zones accessibles au public de la baie pour le myriophylle en épi tout au long de l'été, et bien qu'elle n'en ait pas trouvé à ce jour, la plupart des rives sont de propriété privée. "Les propriétaires riverains détiennent la clé qui nous permet de suivre et de prévenir la propagation du myriophylle en épi. Si vous pensez avoir vu cette plante dans vos eaux, contactez belleislewatershed@gmail.com" dit Melissa Rafuse, Responsable de projets avec la Coalition du bassin versant de Belleisle.
La bonne nouvelle, dit Elton, est qu'en identifiant cette nouvelle colonie relativement tôt, des mesures peuvent être prises pour arrêter la propagation dans la baie. "Les plaisanciers doivent éviter les zones où la plante pousse (si possible) afin de limiter la fragmentation des plantes en engendrant encore plus de plantes, et si vous arrivez à votre quai et remarquez que du matériel végétal se trouve sur votre bateau, ne le jetez PAS à l'eau ; jetez-le plutôt à la poubelle une fois sur terre ferme".
Le myriophylle en épi a le potentiel de se développer en un tapis épais et dense où il obstrue les cours d'eau, étouffe les autres espèces de plantes, modifie l'habitat des poissons et détruit les plages. "Il pousse de manière si dense dans certaines régions qu'il peut devenir très difficile de faire du bateau, de nager, de pêcher ou de faire du kayak dans ces endroits", explique Rafuse.

Contacts médias :
Kristin Elton, Directrice
Conseil des espèces envahissantes du Nouveau-Brunswick
coordinator@nbinvasives.ca
(506) 262-6247
Melissa Rafuse, Responsable de projets
Coalition du bassin versant de Belleisle
belleislewatershed@gmail.com
(902) 691-3162
CyanobacteriaWebinarWelcome cropped medium
Take a break from Netflix, and watch this excellent video of a recent webinar with Dr. Janice Lawrence, a University of New Brunswick Professor of Biology. Learn about cyanobacteria and how genetic tools are being used to determine if cyanobacteria contain harmful cyanotoxins. Learn how harmful cyanotoxins arise from cyanobacteria, why they are increasing in surface freshwater bodies in Canada, and what we are doing about it in New Brunswick.

Be sure to watch the video to the end as Dr. Lawrence does a superb job of answering questions from the webinar attendees. The online, recorded version of the July 16, 2020 webinar is now available at
   https://youtu.be/VjRAT7FCwe8
Please share this description and online webinar with anyone you think might be interested.
Check out our new blog from CECNB

We are not going back to the broken economic model we had. We will not stand by helplessly as our small businesses struggle to stay alive. We have the solutions, we know they work, and they won't cost us one more cent than we spend right now..
Le RENB est très excité de partager ce que nous espérons accomplir cette année ! Voici un bref aperçu de notre plan pour appuyer des groupes environnementaux au cours de l’année 2020-21. Jetez-y un coup d'oeil !

2020 Programplan FR
We are UnFrackable -#WetsuwetenStrong and the Ethics of LNG
 
NBASGA, along with other sponsors - NBMEdiaCoop, RAVEN, Council of Canadians Fredericton, and the Peace and Friendship Alliance - were set to bring a cross country tour to Fredricton, until the corona virus changed our plans.

However, under the sponsorship of a different "RAVEN" group ("Respecting Aboriginal Values and Environmental Needs") - the tour has been redesigned as a 3-part webinar series.

"We are UnFrackable" – focuses on national resistance to LNG – aka fracked gas.  Its goals are to share strategic approaches – from supporting Indigenous legal challenges, to divestment and de-funding campaigns – and to build an unbreakable alliance of action.  The narrative peddled by government and industry is that LNG is “ethical”, “environmental”, and “economic”.  The webinars will bring together fantastic expert guests and frontline activists to debunk that myth, while connecting the dots of resistance from coast to coast to coast.

The first webinar is FRIDAY APRIL 3 at 8 pm AT and is entitled: #WetsuwetenStrong and the Ethics of LNG, with Hereditary Chief Adam Gagnon and Mike Sawyer, COGC.

It will be an amazing opportunity to hear directly from Wet’suwet’en hereditary leader Chief Dsta’Hyl – Adam Gagnon, in conversation with Mike Sawyer of the Citizen’s Oil and Gas Council.
  • Chief Gagnon is a member of the Likhts’amisyu clan who have launched legal challenges to protect their traditional territory from fracked gas pipelines. He will talk about the Constitutional and Charter challenge to Coastal Gas Link and other fossil projects on Wet’suwet’en territory, based on the equity rights of future generations in a time of climate crisis.
  • Micheal Sawyer brings 30 years of extensive experience in Canadian regulatory and energy policy matters. Sawyer is no stranger to the power of citizen-driven justice: he’s famous for winning a court challenge against an LNG plant proposed for Lelu Island in BC: three weeks after that victory, the project was cancelled.
  • Your host is Mary Lovell, a climate justice organizer that has been primarily organizing against tar sands, extreme oil, and the Trans Mountain project for eight years. Mary is a campaigner with RAVEN and Sierra Club BC.
The achievement of Indigenous Peoples, and of activists like Sawyer, are proof: people power works.  And, when we forge alliances across the country, we are un-frackable. The strategic legal approaches like those being used in B.C., Quebec, and Nova Scotia against fracked gas infrastructure can become a blueprint for fighting LNG projects across the country.

This first webinar will touch on projects that may affect New Brunswick, but have been flying under the radar.

To sign-up for the webinar and/or find more information:  https://raventrust.com/we-are-unfrackable-webinar-series/
We have also put up an event on Facebookhttps://www.facebook.com/events/1269560153248578
Contact https://raventrust.com/we-are-unfrackable-webinar-series/
This is an open letter to the Members of the Legislative Assembly of New Brunswick of New Brunswick, the leadership of N.B. Power, the Energy and Utilities Board and various news agencies.
To all concerned;
Leap4wards as an organization is interested in sustainability. We understand from their website that N.B. Power has a goal to obtain 40% of NB electricity from renewable sources by December 2020. This is an effort we support, but have some concerns.
It has come to our attention that in New Brunswick there are a number of municipal power utilities and private entrepreneurs developing proposals to produce their own power from proven renewable energy sources. These parties are running into roadblocks extending from the N.B. Electricity Act. Concerns include:
-Who is allowed to produce the electricity used by N.B.Power
-Who decides the sources of power which are bought
-Compensation rates for independent producers
-where a community can produce their power
We expect there are more roadblocks.
Meanwhile N.B. Power and the Province of New Brunswick seem to be preoccupied with less practical projects. New Brunswick tax payers/ratepayers have had their money invested in a questionable electrolysis project in Florida. Now we are also investing in a small scale nuclear project which would not be able to produce power for at least 10 years. These timelines do not match the expectations presented by the Intergovernmental Panel on Climate Change. 
Leap4wards questions why we can’t work with New Brunswickers interested in renewable power generation who have projects ready to go. Simply by altering the legislation in the N. B. Electricity Act we could allow a range of proven renewable technologies to be brought forward fairly quickly. 
This is the path that Germany took in 1991 when Herman Scheer initiated their Electricity Feed In Act which required grid companies to connect all renewable power plants. The passing of this act paved the way for Germany to become the world leader in renewable energy it is today.
Localization, in all its forms is considered by many to be one of the most effective approaches to climate change. Allowing local municipalities and entrepreneurs to produce their own power from renewable sources would go a long way towards helping N. B. Power reach its admirable 40% renewable energy by December 2020 goal.
 
Kindest regards;
Norma MacKellar  180 Britain St, Saint John, E2L 1X6
Paula Tippett         4273 Loch Lomond Rd, Saint John, E2N 1C7
 
For Leap4wards, Saint John
 

This article appeared in the Daily Gleaner, Friday, January 24, 2020

How long before climate emergency gains traction?

Fredericton is under pressure to join the many hundreds of Canadian municipalities and federal government that have declared a climate emergency.

A Climate Emergency declaration is “a piece of legislation or directive putting a government or organization on record in support of emergency action to restore a safe climate.” (Climate Mobilization 2020)

With few indications of leadership at the provincial level in this province, local governments are being pushed to take the strongest possible action towards mobilization. So far Bathurst, Saint John, Moncton and Edmundston have done this. Are the declarations of climate emergency symbolic, without teeth? That depends on how much people hold Council members to account to living up to their words.

Declaring a climate emergency is the first step towards shifting governments into emergency mode to address this global crisis. The focus should include a healthy dose of carbon/greenhouse gas drawdown as well as public safety in adapting to the new norm of extended heatwaves, more violent weather events and possible food shortages. It should include City residents as well as corporate operations.

What would declaring a climate emergency change for Fredericton?

 It would tell everyone, from environmental activist to electrical journeyman that this crisis is real, and that their personal actions—from choosing a new car to heating their homes—matter.

It would clearly say to our community, in turn percolating down to neighbourhoods, social groups etc. that you can either contribute to making things better in a framework where we are all working together, or you can choose to make things worse by your individual choices.

My guess is most of us would want to do the former.                                                                         

Mobilizing to address the climate crisis takes everyone, everywhere with no exceptions. This is a crisis, even though when we get up the sun is still shining, there is still food on the table and heat in the house. We lead a fairly privileged life here in New Brunswick; we have so far avoided the impacts being felt in places like Australia or along the US southern border, where migrants fleeing economic and climate breakdown and crime are signs of things to come elsewhere (but not here, we secretly tell ourselves).

Talk to an emergency measures coordinator though, and the future picture in New Brunswick gets dark in a hurry. They are the ones buying houses on the hill, out of the floodplain, and worrying about social unrest and crime waves.

Providing a safe climate, irrespective of our own seemingly miniscule contributions to its deterioration, means maximizing protection for people and species with whom we share this Earth. Organizing isn’t solely in the wheelhouse of the professionals. Neighbourhoods, block parents, local food groups, seniors all have a role in both drawing down our carbon output as well as supporting adaptive measures to help us cope.

A Mayor’s task force on the climate emergency, or a committee similar to that on homelessness is in order.  Council just had a perfect opportunity to direct surplus budget resources to climate, but did not. Instead, funds were put into Ignite Fredericton and immigration. Both of these are worthy, they are just not emergencies like the climate crisis.

Frederictonians are increasingly aware that something is amiss with the climate. By electing a Green Party MP in Jenica Atwin to represent us in Ottawa citizens have embraced the political party with a coherent and relevant plan to address the climate emergency—one that envisions a World War II scale mobilization starting now.

The effects of climate change aren’t going to stop. They’re going to overlap and get worse. What can seem an inconvenience today can become a major catastrophe in a heartbeat.

If you want people to act in an emergency, you have to act AS IF it’s an emergency. I want our city to be the public voice that makes people aware of their role and gets them out of their comfort zones. I want the city to start making climate adaptation and carbon drawdown a line item in every budget, not counting on staff to write grant applications for crumbs from the Feds.

And most of all, I want City Council to avoid taking decisions that compromise our climate resilience or endorse projects that add more emissions to an already overburdened atmosphere.

One wonders how bad things have to get before this climate emergency concept gets traction.

Margo Sheppard

Fredericton

Ditching fossil fuels is like a ‘monkey trap’

The Daily Gleaner, Tuesday, January 28, 2020

A recent Brunswick News Commentary wondered how bad must things get before the concept of ‘climate emergency’ gets traction.

One depressing answer may be found in the title of a widely circulated NYTimes editorial: “Australia Is Committing Climate Suicide.”

The continuing unimaginable conflagration of Australian bushfires has already burned an area much larger than New Brunswick, destroyed thousands of homes, and killed over a billion animals.

Decades will pass before knowing how many human lives will be lost or shortened by exposure to the world’s worst air pollution. An air quality index (AQI) above 200 is defined as hazardous. The AQI in Canberra has hit 4,650.

Climate scientists have long predicted such events, as the conditions that created them are well-studied climate topics.

While droughts and heat waves are normal, climate warming increases the odds of their occurrence, their duration, and their intensity. A continually warming Australia experienced its hottest and driest year in 2019. Average temperatures in the 40’s have baked the entire continent for weeks. Altered weather patterns push normal rains out to the ocean.

Yet, despite scientists’ warnings, years of increasingly destructive weather, and the current catastrophe, Australia plans to expand its world-leading exports of coal and liquid natural gas (LNG).

Perhaps, the country does have a psychotic death wish. Maybe it’s contagious.

In the USA, 100, 500 and 1000-year floods are meaningless, as they occur regularly. While the southwest faces water shortages, the central breadbasket remained flooded for months. California’s fire season is now year-round. Coasts are threatened by tropical depressions that turn into monster hurricanes within a day.

America’s response? Promote coal and frack as much gas and oil as possible.

Canada watches record fires burn BC, Ft. McMurray, and boreal forests. Extreme temperatures and precipitation and record flooding are the norm. Canada is warming at twice the global rate, and three times as fast in our north, where melting ice and permafrost lead to abandoned settlements and climate refugees.

Yet, several provinces stake their futures on huge new tarsands and LNG projects. The federal government, while shouting climate emergency warnings, inexplicably abets these expansions.

Maybe a mass psychosis has seized these countries. But, perhaps, there is a better explanation - the classic ’monkey trap’.

A monkey trap is an immovable trap, with a hole just large enough for a monkey's open hand. It is baited with a banana. A monkey grabs the banana, but the hole is not large enough to allow the monkey to withdraw its clenched fist (now clutching a banana).

Because the monkey can’t conceive of letting the banana go, it remains trapped, awaiting its fate.

It is the perfect analogy for humanity’s current situation. We cannot escape our trap (climate emergency), because we can’t conceive of giving up the banana (fossil fuels), even though doing so is our only means of escape.

There is absolutely no doubt about the climate trap. All the recent climate disasters resulted from less than 1.5-degrees warming - considered the ‘safe’ limit.

Our current fossil fuel usage puts us on track for 3 to 5 degree warming. At 3 degrees, Australian-like catastrophes become normal.

2019 ended the hottest decade on both land and in the ocean. No one born after 1985 has experienced a month cooler than the 20th century average.

Coal, and the energy intensive processes of fracking, LNG and tarsands produce more greenhouse gases than conventional oil and gas, and make the USA, Australia and Canada the word’s largest per capita contributors to climate change.

Despite knowing this, they still can’t conceive of letting them go.

Supposedly, a monkey isn’t intelligent enough to understand how its trap works. Is it conceivable that we, likewise, lack the intellect or imagination to envision a life without fossil fuels?

Or is it something more distinctly human? Are we so tied to greed, convenient habits, or misbegotten ideology that we cannot act to save ourselves?

We have a simple choice. Let go of the banana, or remain trapped. Nothing else will save us.

New Brunswick’s record floods, tropical storms, hurricanes, ice storms, and windstorms are becoming the norm. Each costs millions and affects our health, lives and livelihoods.

Our government has finally begun taking small steps to address the climate crisis. Hydro-electricity from Quebec to replace coal-fired Belledune is a good idea, as is regional cooperation. The Ministers of Environment and Energy tout their climate awareness in plans to use carbon-pricing revenue for climate action programs.

Yet, immediately upon hearing that a complicated investment deal might restart a local shale gas industry - an industry that supercharges climate warming - the Minister of Energy boasted how his Department had made it possible.

Congratulations! Have a banana! They’re irresistible.

The fossil fuels we have all profited from now threaten our existence. If you believe that we can gradually let them go, because we are superior to monkeys, let your leaders know. Act for our children instead of quietly awaiting fate.

Jim Emberger is spokesperson for the New Brunswick Anti-Shale Gas Alliance

Pour diffusion immédiate
Le 18 novembre 2019

Samedi le 16 novembre 2019, cinq prix environnementaux ont été attribués à des groupes et citoyens du Nouveau-Brunswick pour souligner leur service exemplaire à leurs communautés.

L’Alliance du bassin versant de la Petitcodiac a reçu le prix Samaqan pour ses efforts constants pour protéger et restaurer les habitats d’eau douce des bassins versants de la Petitcodiac et de la Memramcook grâce à la science, l’éducation et l’engagement de la communauté. Le prix Samaqan est accordé à ceux et celles qui ont consacré leurs efforts à l’eau et aux espèces qui habitent dans les eaux.

Le prix Phénix était présenté à Symbiose, le groupe environnemental de l’Université de Moncton, pour la mobilisation non seulement des étudiants mais aussi de la communauté du Grand Moncton sur les changements climatiques en lien avec le mouvement mondial pour le climat. Le prix Phénix est accordé à ceux et celles qui ont consacré leurs efforts aux politiques et à la législation et qui ont été dans le feu de l’action.

Le prix Gaia a été présenté à Megan de Graaf, écologiste forestière de Community Forests International, pour sa profonde compréhension des liens entre les gens et les forêts, pour son dévouement au renforcement des capacités rurales pour la conservation et la restauration de la forêt acadienne et pour son souci des détails, sa curiosité et son respect. Le prix Gaia est accordé à ceux et celles qui ont consacré leurs efforts à la terre et aux espèces qui habitent sur terre.

EOS Éco-Énergie a été honoré par le prix Zéphyr pour son leadership communautaire et ses efforts assidus pour dynamiser des solutions locales aux changements climatiques dans la région Tantramar-Memramcook. Le prix Zéphyr est accordé à ceux et celles qui ont consacré leurs efforts à l’air et aux espèces qui habitent les airs.

Le Conseil de conservation du Nouveau-Brunswick a reçu un prix spécial en reconnaissance de ses 50 années d’activité et de leadership environnemental au Nouveau-Brunswick.

Les prix ont été présentés lors de la réunion annuelle du Réseau environnemental du Nouveau-Brunswick, Éco-confluence, qui a eu lieu à Fredericton au cours de la fin de semaine. Chaque année, les efforts importants déployés par les citoyens et les groupes de citoyens pour protéger et restaurer l’environnement au Nouveau-Brunswick sont reconnus durant une cérémonie spéciale.

Le Réseau environnemental du Nouveau-Brunswick est un réseau de communication sans but lucratif comprenant plus de 110 groupes environnementaux de citoyens et de citoyennes de toutes les régions de la province. Le but du Réseau est d’encourager le réseautage et la collaboration parmi les groupes et entre les groupes, le gouvernement et d’autres secteurs.

- 30 –

Photo:
Award Winners NBEN 2019
Photographe : RENB.

Contact:
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