In five years Canada has gone through five environment ministers. Today we profile the latest appointment to the position, Peter Kent, and hear from some of the people he’ll be working with about their thoughts on his history in politics and the direction he’ll be taking. We’ve also got an interview with film maker Tom Radford whose new documentary Tipping Point: The Age of the Oil Sands will be airing on The Nature of Things this week. Plus, have you ever wondered just what’s included under the term “emissions”? We’ll fill you in on that too!
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The New Brunswick provincial government has arranged to hold a public forum on shale gas development in Sussex
Shale gas is accessed by a controversial process known as hydraulic fracturing or fracking. During fracking, companies pump a mixture of water, sand and chemicals into the ground that fracture the shale layer, letting them extract natural gas from areas that would otherwise remain trapped in the shale rock. Individuals and property owners concerned about exploration, environmental safeguards, landowner rights, economic benefits and employment will be able to question government and industry officials during the meeting.
Scientists and citizens groups are calling for a moratorium on cottage development along the shores of Lake Winnipeg
They want shoreline construction to cease until the provincial government develops a policy to protect shorelines and watersheds that is founded on scientific principles. Unregulated development on lakeshores is destroying the surrounding marshlands that act to naturally filter out excess nutrients and sediment before runoff enters a lake. Without the presence of protective marshes, lakes can become cloudy with sediment or choked by toxic algae blooms.
Cargo ship contaminated with spilt uranium concentrate docks in the port of Vancover to replenish fuel and supplies
The ship was carrying uranium from the Saskachewan mining company Cameco to China when it hit rough seas just north of Hawaii earlier this month. In the course of the storm, two barrels of the radioactive cargo were damaged and spilled their contents into the ship’s hold.
Southern Ontario Bald Eagle Monitoring Project Reports that Bald Eagle Numbers are on the Rise
In 1980 there were zero successful breeding pairs in Ontario, but since then, a gradual decline in environmental contaminants, especially the organic pesticide DDT, has coincided with a gradual improvement in Bald Eagle numbers. The recovery has been ongoing for over a decade, and in August 2009, the Bald Eagle’s status was reduced from “Endangered” to “Species of Special Concern” in Ontario.
Profile of New Environment Minister Peter Kent
There’s a new boss at Environment Canada. Stephen Harper announced that Peter Kent, Conservative MP from Toronto, would be Canada’s new Environment Minister earlier this month. So just who is Peter Kent and is he up to the task? To find out, Terra Informa’s David Kaczan and Myles Curry spoke to a few people he’ll need to work with to get their take on the new Minister and what challenges he’s going to face.
Interview with Film Maker Tom Radford
This week David Suzuki’s The Nature of Things is airing a new oil sands documentary titled Tipping Point: The Age of the Oil Sands. It’s the culmination of two years of work by film maker Tom Radford, that saw him talk to scientists, government, industry, and concerned community members. Today he speaks to us about the effect the experience had on him and the messages he took away from it.