Politics With Courage and Life Without Plastic (493)

We start the show this week with a quick review lead by Emmay Mah of the Vancourver Declaration of Clean Growth and Climate Change released yesturday (March 3rd). While the document has all sorts of great sounding language in it, there are a few issues still with it. Top of the list is that it’s about 20 years too late for the type of ‘intent to review’ and promises to do more research that the document is filled with, the other is that it’s weak politics. Listen for our full review, and you can read the press release and documents yourself here:

Full communiqué of Canada’s First Ministers
Download the Vancouver Declaration on Clean Growth and Climate Change (pdf)

In the second section, Daryn taken on the nonsense of fake-business success, and real cartoon villain wannabe: Kevin O’Leary for his non-information attacks on Cap + Trade and Ontario Premier Kathleen Wynne for low-information voters. Don’t get us wrong, we aren’t blind to the issues with the Ontario Liberals, and neither do we have faith that the proposed fund will be problem free. But O’Leary has no right whatsoever to claim superiority, nor expertise on these issues. What do we get when we listen to people like O’Leary? The Flint water crisis is a perfect example of the type of corruption and economic damage caused by a regulation free, Laissez-faire economic environment that people like O’Leary propose as the solution to all our problems. In fact, it’s how we got most of them in the first place.

O’Leary calls out Wynne in open letter
Flint Water Crisis: Who Is To Blame?
Brad Wall’s dangerous addiction
Damning Flint Emails Show Snyder Could Have Called Emergency ‘at Any Time’
Energy East pipeline won’t divide Canadians, Trudeau insists

In the final section of the live show, new volunteer and correspondent Clark Barr talks to us about his mission to live a year without plastic. What does that mean, how hard it really is, and if plastics so bad what are we supposed to do about it?

For the Bonus Show, hosted by Sabina Hyseni we talk about the increased economic opportunities and consequent rush to commercialize the Arctic as vast areas of usually in-traversable ice melts back due to climate change. A 5 year old could see that this is insanity, but it happens anyways. Why? What are the risks? What do we do about it? The team discusses.

Climate change opens sensitive Arctic waters to industrial exploitation

Some other important news this week you may have missed:

Why is 2016 smashing heat records?
Leonardo DiCaprio Used Oscar Acceptance Speech To Deliver Important Message
While fossils crashed in 2015, clean energy soared
Revealed: Big Oil’s Backroom Lobby Blitz to Drill in Arctic…Again
Tax Loopholes For Rich Cost Canada $16 Billion A Year: Study
As Rivers Run Black in Peru, Indigenous Tribes Left Cleaning Big Oil’s Disaster
Mercury-blighted community of Grassy Narrows takes its case to the UN
Ikea To Use Mushroom-Based Packaging That Will Decompose In A Garden Within Weeks

This Weeks Music:

Maps “Mediocrity” & Wintersleep “Territory”



(464) Green Energy Open House

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Nicole Risse, Executive Director of the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association starts the show with us to talk about Green Energy Doors Open. OSEA works to promote all forms of clean energy, including the cleanest of all.. the energy you don’t produce through efficiency and grid modernization. After introducing herself as the new ED for OSEA (former ED Kris Steven’s was a repeat guest) Nicole gives us a preview of the upcoming Green Energy Doors Open events happening all over Ontario, which you can learn more about here: http://greenenergydoorsopen.ca/

For the rest of the show, Stefan and Daryn discuss a range of top news stories including Obama’s new Clean Energy Plan and the implications for Canada.

You can view the links for the discussed articles here:

400 Alaskan villagers are set to be the U.S.’s first climate change refugees

Obama to Unveil Tougher Environmental Plan With His Legacy in Mind


Global Glaciers Melting up to Three Times Rate of 20th Century

Bombshell Study Reveals Methane Emissions Hugely Underestimated

You can boost Indigenous reporting — here’s how

To glimpse the future of oil, look at coal in the U.S.

And some other interesting items we didn’t get to:

Revealed: Canadian government spent millions on secret tar sands advocacy

Canada Gives Shell Permission to Leave Future Offshore Well Blowout Uncapped for 21 Days, the U.S. Gives 24 Hours

Producing NH3 as a green fuel

US Gov’t Expert: Fukushima Reports of shrunken or enlarged organs, black kidneys, sores on liver, slime in mouth, discolored skin — Mortality in intertidal zone like “we haven’t seen before”

BREAKING: Harper gov’t appoints Kinder Morgan consultant to NEB

TransCanada deal aims to undermine Energy East protest movement

This weeks music!

K-OS “Crabbuckit” & Tragically Hip “38 Years Old”

Please check out our Climate Cartoons Series!

We need your help to share this new project to help explain renewable energy to students, politicians and voters, and they are only 2 min! You can watch and share here: http://www.greenmajority.ca/climate_cartoons

(448) Canada’s First Green Waves

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First up this week, Ryan O’Connor author of “First Green Wave: Pollution Probe and the Origins of Environmental Activism in Ontario”. Before there was Greenpeace, Environmental Defence, Ecojustice, Sierra Club or any other of the hundreds of large and small environmental organizations in Canada today there was Pollution Probe. Started by a few students and faculty at the University of Toronto back in 1969, Pollution Probe but environmental protection and activism on the map with a series of small and big wins protecting Canadians from burning rivers, toxic smokestacks and rampant litter. Ryan walks us through an outline of his book on the history of Pollution Probe and comments on the contrast between 1970’s environmentalism in Canada and today.

You can reach Ryan at his website, and learn more about him here.

You can also read the forward to his book by Graeme Wynn (Pollution Probe veteran) here.

Second up, Stefan and Kevin provide some background and context from California and BC on cap and trade/carbon tax with the announcement of Ontario joining California and Quebec in a cap and trade system.

Some of the reference material presented by Stefan is here:

Daryn also takes a min to dig at some ignorant and misleading reporting by the Toronto Sun on the subject. Think he’s being dramatic/partisan? Here’s the article, judge for yourself 😀

Cap and trade yet another Liberal tax grab [Toronto Sun]

Lastly we talk to Jo Royle, Officer for the Pew Charitable Trusts with the Global Ocean Legacy program about the very recent announcement by the UK government to approve the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve which is now the worlds largest fully protected marine space. We talk to Jo about the importance of protecting ocean space, the implicit difficultly of getting people and governments to care about something they almost never see or think about and the value of a clean ocean in general.

Learn more about Jo Royle and the Pew Charitable Trusts here.

Read the release announcement for the Pitcairn Islands Marine Reserve here.

This Weeks Music:

Do Make Say Think — White Light OfThe Rolling Stones — She Smiled Sweetly

(439) Ontario Pricing Carbon?

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Ann Pohl
Ann Pohl

A grandmother, Ann Pohl is a founding member of Upriver Environment Watch. Last October, she was named in a SLAPP suit by the fracking corporation, SWN Resources Canada. She is currently working with local Mi’kmaq elders to bring a legal challenge to court, to protect the natural environment for the sake of all future generations. Fundraising is just getting underway for the IMW Peace & Friendship Legal Fund. IMW stands for Iapjiw Maliaptasiktɨtiew Wskwitqamu.”  These Mi’kmaq words can be understood to mean Protecting the Earth for Future Generations.

Ann speaks to us today about working with First Nations groups, victory in NB to ban shale drilling and other stories of a grandmother on the front lines. You can learn more about IMW Legal Defence fund, and Ann here.

In the second half, Stefan, Kevin and Daryn discuss the news that Ontario Environment Minister Glen Murray announced that Ontario will be pursuing some form of carbon plan. The hosts discuss the benefits of various ways to put a price on carbon, and some of our concerns, despite this good sounding news.

You can read the Toronto Star article, that the hosts were less than thrilled with here, and feel free to tweet Mr. Brennan and tell him what you think with @rjbrennanLiberals working on carbon pricing policy for Ontario, Glen Murray says

This weeks music…

“Soul and Onward” – Do Make Say Think & “Marquee Moon” – Television

(434) SLAPP, Hypocrites and the TPP

Screen Shot 2015-01-09 at 2.33.45 PM
Ramani Nadarajah

This week, we discuss Ontario’s newly proposed anti-SLAPP legislation with Ramani Nadarajah, Council for the Canadian Environmental Law Association. SLAPP or “Strategic Lawsuits Against Public Participation” are when costly lawsuits are employed not to achieve justice, but instead to scare the public away from participating in the discussion of public policy issues with intimidation and threats. Ramani joins us to explore what this legislation is, how it works, and how this might affect national environmental battles on everything from public planning to resource extraction. You can read more and learn about CELA here: http://www.cela.ca/blog/2014-12-17/ontario-government-introduces-anti-slapp-bill

With the theme of money and public participation this week, we also spend a fair bit of time talking about the ongoing secret back room deals surrounding the proposed TPP or Trans-Pacific Partnership. The TPP has been described as “NAFTA on Steroids” and is essentially a massive giveaway of power from governments to giant global corporations. Before you form an opinion on this issue, think about if this is a fair deal that helps regular citizens, why it would be happening in secret? Why lawmakers can’t even read the entire bill or take it out of the building much less share what it says with their constituents? The TPP is being drafted behind closed doors with an attempt to ceed power away from citizens. They didn’t even want you to know it was happening at all, much less the details of the agreement. Please read this:  Why the Trans-Pacific Partnership Agreement is a Pending Disaster and you can find out what the Council of Canadian’s think here: http://canadians.org/tpp.

Finally, we started and ended the show with a talk about the “Stop Harper” campaign currently underway across the country… Our hosts were somewhat split on this issue, what do you think? Is simply making the next federal campaign a referendum on Harper good enough to get better governance in Canada? Or will it guarantee another split left vote that sees Harper back for another round? You tell us! Please leave a comment below if you have something you’d like to say about this, especially if you think we got something wrong! Furthermore, I’m not interested in stopping freedom of expression. If you think I got this wrong, you can buy your “Stop Harper Stickers” here.

We were going to talk about these stories but didn’t get to them… Have a great week!

(421) Measuring Success

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angela bischoff
Angela Bischoff

Angela Bischoff, outreach co-ordinator for the Ontario Clean Air Alliance starts off the show with an update on their campaigns including a report back from the Peoples Climate March, Great Lakes Nuclear Dump campaign and upcoming election issues. You can read more about Angela who is now a regular contributor to our program on our contributors page here.

Mike Morrice
Mike Morrice

Our main interview is with Mike Morrice, executive director and co-founder of the Sustainability CoLab. SCoLab was started as a Waterloo project to help provide metrics for cities and businesses to measure and thereby effectively implement voluntary sustainability initiatives. SCoLab’s approach is different in the emphasis on metrics but also by taking the idea that it’s participants should be celebrated for the changes they can and do make, rather than attacking them for what they aren’t doing. SCoLab has seen a huge expansion since it’s inception and is now a big player in the sustainability field in Canada.

You can check out the video version of Mike’s interview below, and an extended cut of the interview is available for members! What is membership about? Find out here: www.patreon.com/greenmajority

As you might have heard, we are now producing high-quality interviews in full HD video as well as memberships that get you exclusive members content each week! Check it out on the main site here: greenmajority.ca

This weeks Music:

REM “It’s the End of the World as We Know It (And I Feel Fine)” & City And Colour “Harder Than Stone”

(420) Doors Open Politics

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Claire Malcomson
Claire Malcomson

First up, Claire Malcolmson who is the Manager of Campaign Fairness at the Rescue Lake Simcoe Coalition who joins us to talk about their Campaign Fairness initiative. While this may not seem like an obvious connection for a primarily environmental focused organization, Claire connects the dots for us with some startling facts about the effect of industry donations to municipal election campaigns.

You can read more about Rescue Lake Simcoe Coalition and the reports they have produced on this issue here: http://www.rescuelakesimcoe.org/ourwork/campaign-fairness.html

Kristopher Stevens
Kristopher Stevens

Secondly, we are joined by Kristopher Stevens who is the Executive Director of the Ontario Sustainable Energy Association to talk to us generally about renewable energy in Canada, but more specifically about Green Energy Doors Open 2014 which is a showcase of renewable energy projects in communities in Alberta, Ontario and is even now spreading into the USA in partnership with Decentralized Energy Canada. One event that happens tomorrow is the West Toronto Ride for Renewables, and we hope to see you there!

Green Energy Doors Open 2014 event listings: http://greenenergydoorsopen.ca/

West Toronto Ride for Renewables direct link: http://greenenergydoorsopen.ca/events/socec2014/

As you might have heard, we are now producing high-quality interviews in full HD video as well as memberships that get you exclusive members content each week! Check it out on the main site here: greenmajority.ca

This weeks Music:

Crash Test Dummies “How Does A Duck Know” & David Bowie “Five Years”