Enbridge barred from restarting leaky oil pipeline

August 1 2012

Enbridge won’t be allowed to resume oil transmission in its leaky Wisconsin pipeline until it can prove it’s safe, according to a U.S. government order.

The pipeline, which carries Canadian crude oil to refineries in the Chicago area, ruptured on Friday and spilled about 1,200 barrels (190,000 litres) onto farmland, forcing the evacuation of two homes and threatening a drinking-water source four kilometres away.

“Accidents like the one in Wisconsin are absolutely unacceptable,” U.S. Transportation Secretary Ray LaHood said in a statement Tuesday.

“I will soon meet with Enbridge’s leadership team and they will need to demonstrate why they should be allowed to continue to operate this Wisconsin pipeline without either a significant overhaul or a complete replacement.”

The U.S. Transportation Department’s pipeline-safety agency issued what’s called a corrective action order on Monday, in which it finds a subsidiary of Calgary-based Enbridge Inc. would risk “life, property and the environment” if it restarted the pipeline without “immediate corrective action.”

The order notes that the 750-kilometre-long segment of pipe that ruptured has had problems before, notably in 2007, when 1,500 barrels of oil spilled in Atwood, Wis. Following that leak, tests by Enbridge found “multiple crack anomalies” in the piping.

“The history of failures on respondent’s Lakehead Pipeline system,… defects originally discovered during construction, and the 2007 failure indicate that respondent’s integrity management program may be inadequate,” the order states.

Before Enbridge can resume using the pipeline to transport oil, it must submit a written plan for U.S. government approval. The company has also been ordered to conduct testing on the burst segment, reduce operating pressure in the pipeline by 20 per cent, and come up with a plan for long-term monitoring of the pipe, among other conditions.

In a statement Tuesday, the company said that “it is not unusual” for the U.S. government to issue these kinds of orders, and that it has already begun work toward satisfying several of the conditions.

Northern Gateway concerns

Enbridge, which operates one of the world’s largest pipeline networks for the transmission of oil and gas, has suffered hundreds of leaks over the last decade. A 2010 rupture in Michigan spilled more than three million litres of heavy crude into the Kalamazoo River, prompting $3.7 million in fines, $800 million in cleanup costs, and a strong rebuke from the U.S. National Transportation Safety Board.

Such problems undergird critics’ opposition to the company’s plan to build the so-called Northern Gateway system of pipelines across northern B.C., which would ship crude from the Alberta oilsands to ports on the Pacific Ocean.

On Monday, in a fresh volley of attacks, former Canadian environment minister David Anderson said Enbridge is “the last company in North America” that should be allowed to do it because the corporation has a “cowboy culture” and pays little attention to environmental safety procedures. The Union of B.C. Indian Chiefs and the B.C. New Democratic Party have also voiced opposition to the Northern Gateway project.

Oil in Eden: The Battle to Protect Canada’s Pacific Coast

It’s one of the last bastions of Canadian wilderness: the Great Bear Rainforest, on BC’s north and central Pacific coast. Home to humpback whales, wild salmon, wolves, grizzlies, and the legendary spirit bear – this spectacular place is now threatened by a proposal from Enbridge to bring an oil pipeline and supertankers to this fragile and rugged coast. The plan is to pump over half a million barrels a day of unrefined bitumen from the Alberta Tar Sands over the Rockies, through the heartland of BC – crossing a thousand rivers and streams in the process – to the Port of Kitimat, in the heart of the Great Bear Rainforest. From there, supertankers would ply the rough and dangerous waters of the BC coast en route to Asia and the United States. Dubbed the Northern Gateway Pipeline, the project is of concern for three main reasons: 1. It would facilitate the expansion of the Tar Sands, hooking emerging Asian economies on the world’s dirtiest oil; 2. the risks from the pipeline itself; 3. the danger of introducing oil supertankers for the first time to this part of the BC coast. Source

Alberta Oil Sands a Pollution Nightmare

Indexed List of all Stories in Archives

Privatization in Canada’s Health Care System is Killing People

March 22 2012

Poor hospital cleaning revealed as major problem

‘Some hospitals are a real freaking disaster’

The health of hospitalized Canadians and their visitors is being seriously put at risk by hospitals that have cut corners in cleaning budgets to a Marketplace investigation has revealed.

The program took hidden cameras inside 11 hospitals in Ontario and British Columbia. What they found in many of them were surprisingly inadequate cleaning regimens – in short, dirty hospitals that could make you sick.

In many hospitals, Marketplace staffers applied a harmless gel to places that many people would touch – hand rails, door handles, light switches, elevator buttons.

DIRTY HOSPITALS

The full story, Dirty Hospitals, can be seen on CBC-TV’s Marketplace tonight at 8 p.m., 8:30 in Newfoundland.

The gel glows when seen under an ultra-violet light. But most of the time – and this was true in every hospital where Marketplace carried out gel tests – the gel was still there more than 24 hours later, meaning the surfaces had not been cleaned at all.

The program talked to cleaners, supervisors, nurses, doctors, and hospital administrators to get a handle on what has become a major problem at Canadian health-care facilities – a shocking number of hospital-acquired infections.

While Canadians love to crow about their first-rate health-care system, it also leads in one area that doesn’t get the same glowing reviews.

About 250,000 Canadians come down with life-threatening infections while in hospitals every year. That’s the highest rate in the developed world. As many as 12,000 people a year die.

Denise Ball’s husband Gary became one of those statistics last year.

He was admitted to Niagara General Hospital for treatment of pancreatitis. While there, the 63-year-old retired school teacher contracted C. difficile – a life-threatening superbug that is all too common in Canadian hospitals. It ended up playing a role in his death a few months later.

Denise Ball remembers the cleaning regimen in her husband’s room was less than adequate, saying the cleaners would spend only 10 minutes on a room everyone knew was infected with C. difficile. She says a proper cleaning would have taken much longer.

“This has to stop,” she says. “This is Canada.”

More with less

Time and again, hospital insiders told Marketplace that cleaners were being asked to do more with less. “We used to have one person to one wing of a hospital to clean,” one cleaner said. “Now, we have three floors to clean.”

A cleaning supervisor at one hospital told Marketplace host Erica Johnson that it’s “common practice” for cleaners not to change the cleaning solution in the bucket when mopping up. “They just don’t have the time,” the supervisor said.

‘Some hospitals are a real freaking disaster.’—Infectious disease expert Dr. Michael Gardam

Sometimes there aren’t enough cleaning supplies. A nurse, whose identity Marketplace protected, said she’s seen a cleaner mopping common areas after having mopped the rooms of infected patients because she didn’t have enough mops to change. “She’s just cross-contaminated the whole area, so there’s no area that was actually clean.”

Sometimes, only one cleaner would be on staff in an entire hospital during night shifts. “That kind of day-night difference is very common, and it makes no sense,” says Dr. Michael Gardam, an infectious disease expert at the University Health Network in Toronto.

Gardam has seen enough in his time looking at hospital cleaning practices to know that some hospitals are worse than others – much worse. “Some hospitals are a real freaking disaster,” he told Marketplace.”They’ve been told to actually cut their number of housekeeping staff by outside auditors who are trying to help them balance their budgets.”

In recent years, many hospitals have cut the portion of their budget that is devoted to cleaning. Sometimes, they’ve done that by contracting out cleaners or their management.

C. difficile outbreaks common

It’s not like we haven’t seen the devastating results of hospital-acquired illness. Newscasts and newspapers have been filled with stories of hospitals under quarantine because of C. difficile outbreaks. In the last decade, outbreaks have hit hospitals in most provinces. A huge outbreak in 2003 and 2004 led to as many as 2,000 deaths in Quebec.

Last year, there were outbreaks in at least 10 hospitals across Ontario alone. One of the worst was the Niagara Health System in Ontario. More than 100 cases were diagnosed and the infection was a factor in the deaths of 37 patients, including Gary Ball, the patient mentioned earlier in the story.

The man appointed by the Ontario government to get the Niagara outbreaks under control, Dr. Kevin Smith, denies that hospitals have been cutting back on cleaning. “I think they’re experimenting with new models of cleaning,” he says.

When informed that workers in the Niagara hospital system told Marketplace that they still don’t have the time or resources to do an adequate cleaning job, he says, “I haven’t heard that message,” saying “everybody” feels rushed in health care these days.

The outbreaks are officially over in the Niagara Health System. But when Marketplace showed Smith several areas where researchers had applied test gel in three hospitals he supervises, most of the surfaces showed no evidence of cleaning. The ultra-violet light showed uncleaned hand rails outside an isolation room, uncleaned support rails in a public washroom and uncleaned hand rails in a ward with highly contagious patients.

“I’m obviously very disappointed to see that. That is a less than optimal cleaning opportunity. We need to fix it,” Smith said.

There’s something else that some observers think is helping to drive the pressure to skimp on cleaning. In Ontario and British Columbia, for example, hospitals are given bonuses for turning over beds quickly – hundreds of extra dollars each time a hospital gets a patient out of a room before a certain time. More money is dangled for quickly transferring a patient from the emergency ward to a room. Hospital CEOs, already well-paid, receive bonuses that depend, in part, on reducing wait times.

While the goal of such rewards may be admirable, critics say the actual effect has been to speed up cleaning to an unhealthy degree.

“They just don’t get it,” says Denise Ball. “And maybe until one of their loved ones that went in healthy and … a few months later … they’re going to their grave. Maybe that’s what will wake them up.” There is a video at the Source

Related Stories

8 tips to ensure you won’t get a hospital-acquired infection

FAQs: What is C. difficile?

Opportunistic superbug present in most hospitals

Since the cleaning services have been privatized, the problems began.

The ones now doing the cleaning are not trained well. Poorly paid and over worked. They have to much to do and not enough time.

It is actually costing Canada more to use private companies.

A lesson leaned the hard way. Remember:

About 250,000 Canadians come down with life-threatening infections while in hospitals every year. That’s the highest rate in the developed world. As many as 12,000 people a year die.
The Ontario Ombudsman is the only provincial watchdog in Canada restricted from investigating and resolving issues/complaints in hospitals, long-term care, children’s aid. And there are serious issues that are not being resolved. Please check out how Ontario compares to the rest of Canada:

http://www.ombudsman.on.ca/About-Us/The-Ombudsman-s-Office/Who-We-Oversee/MUSH-Sector.aspx

Please download a copy of this petition and speak to your MPP about expanding the mandate of the Ombudsman to ensure the public is protected and issues of mistreatment, abuse, poor care are addressed properly in these institutions.

http://ontariocfa.com/documents/ombudsman_petition.pdf

http://ontariocfa.com/

Pass this on to all your Canadians friends.

Don’t let Harper privatize any more in Health Care and the privatization that has taken place, must be reversed to save lives. The life you save may be your own.

Update March 27 2012

CBC’s ‘dirty hospital’ report sparks changes

Niagara health authority ends relationship with private U.S. cleaning company Aramark

March 26, 2012

A CBC investigation into unsanitary conditions at the nation’s hospitals has sparked a change in policy by Canada’s biggest health authority and a flood of email messages from concerned viewers.

With hidden cameras, including Canada’s first hidden camera glow-gel test, the consumer show Marketplace visited several hospitals in Ontario and British Columbia, secretly applying a harmless gel to high-touch surfaces, then returning 24 hours later to see whether the gel had been removed, which would indicate the surface had been cleaned.

The program revealed many instances where cleaning had not been carried out, and that sparked a response from the Niagara Health System (NHS), the biggest in the country, whose hospitals have suffered a recent Clostridium difficile outbreak. It has decided to end its relationship with the private U.S. cleaning company Aramark.

NHS authorities wouldn’t specify why they made the move, but did tell CBC News they will be adding “the equivalent of 18 new full-time cleaning positions.” It has been suggested that Aramark was at least partly to blame for the C. difficile outbreaks.

“They made decisions around staffing levels,” Eoin Callan of the Service Employees International Union told CBC News. “They made decisions around what was cleaned, what was not cleaned — how frequently things were cleaned. And they also had an incentive to use cheaper diluted cleaning chemicals that were not as effective because it allowed them to pad their profit margins.”

Ontario Minister of Health Deb Matthews wouldn’t talk on camera, but told Marketplace: “We expect our hospitals to make the best decisions to protect patient safety in their communities.”

The NHS decision may be good news for those awaiting a hospital stay, but cold comfort to people such as Ken Hough, who returned home three weeks ago after a stay at St. Thomas Elgin General Hospital in St. Thomas, Ont.

“You really wouldn’t believe it, unless you’ve seen it,” Hough told Marketplace reporter Erica Johnson, describing rooms where he says dirty bandages and plastic needle covers littered the floor.

The bathroom was the worst, he said.

“Feces on the back of the toilet,” he recalled. “You’d go in to use it, and you’d pivot. I put on rubber gloves to use the toilet seat and just thought, no, I’m not doing this.”

Emails from across the country echoed Hough’s observations.

“The waste baskets in the bathroom were overflowing,” an email from Vancouver read. It took “three days to clean up vomit,” a Calgary viewer wrote. And an email from Winnipeg described “feces left on the floor” for days.

About one-third of hospitals in Ontario outsource their janitorial services, CBC News has learned, and that figure is higher in British Columbia and some other provinces. With files from the CBC’s Erica Johnson Source

That is good news for a change. Now if they could get all the hospitals cleaned up.

With the number of deaths and those who got sick, because of the filth, there were no savings.

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The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster: High Radiation Levels In America! Oklahoma City

The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster: High Radiation Levels In America! Oklahoma City Hit By High Radiation Levels From Rainfall On August 6th, 2011.

 August 7 2011

For a while now, I have been trying to keep up on any reports of high radiation being experience here in Canada as a result of the fallout from the Fukushima nuclear disaster that is still ongoing, despite all of the news reports that are now downplaying that disaster.  More reports about the levels here in Canada will be coming up soon in this blog….

In the meantime, I just came across a very startling and disturbing video, that comes from Youtube user “FireByNIght”.  In this video, that I have embedded here in this report, “FireByNight” has taken readings in Oklahoma City, Oklahoma, on the night of August 6th, 2011, of radiation from rainfall that had occurred that night after a very long period of drought.   Please watch this video to see the results for yourselves:

NTS Notes:  Again, I want to thank Youtube user, “FireByNight” for taking these readings and exposing the fact that America, as well as Canada, is experiencing deadly radioactive fallout from the Fukushima nuclear disaster.   It does seem that the citizens in BOTH the US and Canada are being lied to when our governments claim: “There is no cause for alarm” when it comes to this ongoing nuclear disaster.

And where is the US as well as the Canadian government in all of this?  Our media is continuing to downplay the fallout danger from Fukushima, and trying to keep the public unaware of the dangers that we truly face.    Again as I have stated before this is not negligence on the part of our media, or our governments, but outright criminality!

Please spread this information around for others to see…. We must all demand that our governments come clean about the danger that we face from the ongoing disaster at Fukushima.

Compliments of Northern Truth Seeker.

Fukushima Nuclear Disaster Fallout Maps

Where the wind blows it goes.

The Fukushima Nuclear Disaster in Perspective

Dr. Helen Caldicott’s March 18th press conference in Montreal, sponsored by the Centre for Research on Globalization (CRG)

Our thanks to Felton Davis for the transcription from the GRTV Video recording and for the annotations.


This press conference organized by Globla Research was held in the context of Helen Caldicott’s public lecture to Montreal on March 18, 2011.

First I want to present this report, produced by the New York Academy of Sciences, a report on Chernobyl.  It can be downloaded.(2)  They translated 5,000 articles from Russian for the first time into English.  It seems that nearly a million people have already died as a result of Chernobyl, despite what the WH0(3) says and the IAEA.(4)  This is one of the most monstrous cover-ups in the history of medicine.  Because everybody should know about this.

Then we extrapolate through to Japan.  Japan is by orders of magnitude many times worse than Chernobyl.  Never in my life did I think that six nuclear reactors would be at risk.(5)  I knew that three GE engineers who helped design these Mark I GE reactors, resigned because they knew they were dangerous.(6)

So Japan built them on an earthquake fault.  The reactors partially withstood the earthquake, but the external electricity supply was cut off, and the electricity supplies the cooling water, a million gallons a minute, to each of those six reactors.  Without the cooling water, the water [level] falls, and the rods are so hot they melt, like at Three Mile Island, and at Chernobyl.

So the emergency diesel generators, which are as large as a house, got destroyed by the tsunami, so there is no way to keep the water circulating in the reactors.(7)  Also, on the roofs of the reactors, not within the containment vessel, are cooling pools.  Every year they remove about thirty tons of the most radioactive rods that you can possibly imagine.(8)  Each one is twelve feet long and half an inch thick.  It gives out so much radiation, that if you stand next to it for a couple of minutes, you’ll die.  Not drop dead.  Remember Litvinenko, the Russian, who got poisoned by polonium?(9)  You’ll die like that, with your hair falling out, and bleeding with massive infection, like AIDS patients die.

And [the spent fuel rods] are thermally hot, so they have to be put in a big pool, and continually cooled.  The pool has really no roof.

There have been three hydrogen explosions, blowing off the roof of the building, not the containment vessel of the core, but the roof.  And exposing the cooling pool.(10)  Two of the cooling pools are dry.  They have no water in them.  Meaning that the nuclear fuel rods are covered with a material called zirconium.  When zirconium is exposed to air, it burns, it ignites.  Two of the cooling pools at this moment are burning.  In the cooling pools are many times, like 10 to 20 times more radiation than in each reactor core.  In each reactor core is as much long-lived radiation as would be produced by a thousand Hiroshima-sized bombs.  We are dealing with diabolical energy.

E=MC2 is the energy that blows up nuclear bombs.  Einstein said nuclear power is a hell of a way to boil water.(11)  Because that is all nuclear power is used for, to boil water through the massive heat, turn it into steam, and turn a turbine which generates electricity.

Now when you fission uranium, 200 new elements are formed, all of which are much more poisonous to the body than the original uranium.(12)  Although uranium is pretty poisonous.  America used it in Fallujah, and in Baghdad.  And in Fallujah, 80 per cent of the babies being born are grossly deformed.(13)  They’re being born without brains, single eyes, no arms…  The doctors have told the women to stop having babies.  The incidence of childhood cancer has gone up about twelve times.  This is genocide — it’s a nuclear war being conducted in Iraq.  The uranium that they’re using lasts more than 4.5 billion years.  So we’re contaminating the cradle of civilization.  “The coalition of the willing!”

In the nuclear power plants, however, there is a huge amount of radiation: two hundred elements.  Some last seconds, some last millions of years.  Radioactive iodine lasts six weeks, causes thyroid cancer.  That’s why people are saying, “Better take potassium iodide,” because that blocks the thyroid uptake of radioactive iodine, which later can cause thyroid cancer.

In Chernobyl, over 20,000 people have developed thyroid cancer.(14)  They have their thyroids out, and they will die unless they take thyroid replacement every day, like a diabetic has to take insulin.
Strontium-90 will get out, it lasts for 600 years.  It goes to the bone, where it causes bone cancer or leukemia.  Cesium lasts for 600 years — it’s all over Europe.  40 per cent of Europe is still radioactive.  Turkish food is extremely radioactive.  Do not buy Turkish dried apricots, or Turkish hazelnuts.  The Turks were so cross with the Russians, they sent all their radioactive tea over to Russia after Chernobyl.(15)

Forty per cent of Europe is still radioactive.  Farms in Britain, their lambs are so full of cesium they can’t sell them.  Don’t eat European food.

But that’s nothing compared to what’s happening now.  One of the most deadly [nuclear byproducts] is plutonium, named after Pluto, god of the underworld.  One millionth of a gram, if you inhale it, would give you cancer.  Hypothetically, one pound of plutonium if evenly distributed could give everyone on earth cancer.  Each reactor has 250 kilograms of plutonium in it.  You only need 2.5 kilograms to make an atomic bomb, because plutonium is what they make bombs with.

So any country that has a reactor, works with your uranium.  You [Canada] are the biggest exporter of uranium in the world.(16)  Canada sells two things: it sells wheat for life, and uranium for death.  Plutonium is going to get out and spread all over the northern hemisphere.  It’s already heading towards North America now.

Radioactive iodine, plus strontium, plus cesium, plus tritium, and I could go on and* on and on.  When it rains, downs come fallout, and it concentrates in food.  If it gets into the sea, the algae concentrate it, hundreds of times.  And the crustaceans concentrate it, hundreds of times.  And then the little fish, then the big fish, then us.(17)

Because we stand on the apex of the food chain.  You can’t taste these radioactive food elements, you can’t see them, you can’t smell them.  They’re silent.  When you get them inside your body, you don’t suddenly drop dead of cancer, it takes five to sixty years to get your cancer, and when you feel a lump in your breast, it doesn’t say, “I was made by some strontium-90 in a piece of fish you ate twenty years ago.”

All radiation is damaging.  It’s cumulative — each dose you get adds to your risk of getting cancer.  The americium is more dangerous than plutonium — I could go on and on.  Depends if it rains if you’re going to get it or not.  If it rains and the radiation comes down, don’t grow food, and don’t eat the food, and I mean don’t eat it for 600 years.

Radioactive waste from nuclear power is going to be buried, I hear, next to Lake Ontario.  It’s going to leak, last for millions of years, it’s going to get into the water, and into the food chains.  Radioactive waste will induce epidemics of cancer, leukemia, and genetic disease for the rest of time.  This is the greatest public health hazard the world has ever witnessed, apart from the threat every day of nuclear war.

Einstein said “the splitting of the atom changed everything, save man’s mode of thinking” — very profound — “and thus we drift toward unparalleled catastrophe.”  We are arrogant, we have a lot of hubris, and I think the reptilian mid-brain of some men’s brains is pathological.(18)

We are in a situation where we have harnessed the energy of the sun.  It is totally out of control.  And there’s simply nothing we can do about it.

Source

Older report with radiation fallout maps included. The radiation fallout is massive at this point in time.

Add to that the radiation poisoning from wars

What a hell of a mess they are creating.

Fox News tell you all is well. LOL Rightttt.

Obama in a Radiation protection suit, says all is well. Right Sure it is.

I feel so safe after that one. Don’t you?

Obama says “Don’t worry folks, I am not paranoid that is why I am wearing the pretty yellow suit”.

Hello any intelligent life out there. And one has to wonder where Obama and friends are getting their drinking water and food..

Monitoring stations catch a fraction of Fukushima fallout

By Alex Roslin, August 4, 2011

Confused by all the nuke lingo about becquerels and sieverts and what it means for your health? So were most of the nuclear experts we talked to for this story.

It also doesn’t help that Health Canada’s data on the radioactive fallout from Fukushima is so sparse and confusingly reported that it’s hard to figure out whether or not it exceeds government limits.

Health Canada reports on monitoring data for only three or four of the hundreds of radioactive substances spewing out of the crippled Japanese nuclear plant.

Canada also has only five monitoring stations that contain equipment sensitive enough to notice levels of specific radioactive substances from Fukushima in the air.

“They’re measuring only a fraction of the radioactive fallout from Fukushima,” said Gordon Edwards of the Canadian Coalition for Nuclear Responsibility, speaking from Montreal.

In contrast, the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency has 200 monitoring stations checking for up to 11 radioactive substances in everything from air and milk to drinking water and rainwater.

Health Canada’s radiation-monitoring webpage downplays any fallout concerns, saying radiation reaching Canada has been “within normal background levels”. That’s based largely on data from a second network of 35 other monitoring stations that have less sensitive equipment (including 12 in B.C.).

But an analysis of the data from these stations shows radiation levels did hit sustained above-normal levels for an average of 36 days in March and April after Fukushima. The radiation level rose to 0.48 microsieverts per day, on average, during this time, up from 0.43 seen in the rest of the monitoring data between March 10 and July 27—or an increase of 11 percent.

Of all the B.C. sites, the biggest spike was in Victoria, where the level rose from 0.23 to 0.25 microsieverts per day between March 19 and 25—an increase of 9.9 percent. Vancouver saw a four-percent increase, from 0.43 to 0.45 microsieverts.

The worst-hit city in Canada was Regina. It saw a 90-percent spike in its radiation level, from 0.36 to 0.69 microsieverts per day. Yellowknife was second-highest with a 31-percent jump, followed by Toronto with a 26-percent rise.

But this data downplays the radiation from Fukushima, Edwards said. The less sensitive equipment also picks up large amounts of background radiation from natural sources like the sun and soil.

It also doesn’t spot jumps in the type of radioactive substances released in a nuclear accident, like iodine-131. Another problem: sieverts are a questionable way to measure radiation because they include a subjective calculation of the radiation’s impact on a person, and so the results can be manipulated to play down impacts, Edwards said.

“It’s a shell game. Microsieverts are quite a distance removed from the raw data. They’re blending in stuff from nature to make the data look innocuous,” he says.

You have to scroll down to the bottom of Health Canada’s radiation webpage to find the more striking data from the five stations monitoring specific radioactive substances.

This data shows the air at the five stations contained an average of 33.3 millibecquerels of radioactive iodine per cubic metre during 30.4 days of elevated radiation.

That works out to double the 16.7 millibecquerels per cubic metre of iodine-131 that would be permitted over those 30.4 days, according to the maximum limit set by the Canadian Nuclear Safety Commission. (The commission’s ceiling is 200 millibecquerels per cubic metre of exposure in the air on a daily basis for an entire year. That equates to 16.7 millibecquerels per cubic metre over 30.4 days.)

The station in Sidney, B.C., detected 19.4 millibecquerels per cubic metre of iodine-131 in the air during a 22-day-long spike in radiation. That was 61 percent higher than the maximum dose of 12.1 millibecquerels per cubic metre permitted for 22 days.

Source

Kelowna BC receives High Fukushima Fallout Radioactive Rain

July 2011

Dangerous Radioactive rain in Lake Louise, AB

The radiation levels here are dangerously high.

July 2011

Fukushima, Japan China Syndrome or Chernobyl

Maps of Nuclear Sites in US, Europe and Japan

On June 26, 1954, at Obninsk, Russia, the nuclear power plant APS-1 with a net electrical output of 5 MW was connected to the power grid, the world’s first nuclear power plant that generated electricity for commercial use. On August 27, 1956 the first commercial nuclear power plant, Calder Hall 1, Eng-land, with a net electrical output of 50 MW was connected to the national grid.

As of August 7, 2011 in 30 countries 432 nuclear power plant units with an installed electric net capacity of about 366 GW are in operation and 65 plants with an installed capacity of 65 GW are in 16 countries under construction.

As of end 2009 the total electricity production since 1951 amounts to 64,600 billion kWh. The cumulative operating experience amounted to 14,570 years by August 2011.

Country

In operation

Under construction

Number

Electr. net output
MW

Number

Electr. net output
MW
Argentina

2

935

1

692

Armenia

1

375

Belgium

7

5,927

Brazil

2

1,884

1

1,245

Bulgaria

2

1,906

2

1,906

Canada

18

12,569

China

  • Mainland
  • Taiwan

14

6

11,058

4,982

27

2

27,230

2,600

Czech Republic

6

3,678

Finland

4

2,716

1

1,600

France

58

63,130

1

1,600

Germany

9

12,068

Hungary

4

1,889

India

20

4,391

5

3,564

Iran

1

915

Japan

50

44,215

2

2,650

Korea, Republic

21

18,698

5

5,560

Mexico

2

1,300

Netherlands

1

482

Pakistan

3

725

1

315

Romania

2

1,300

Russian Federation

32

22,693

11

9,153

Slovakian Republic

4

1,816

2

782

Slovenia

1

688

South Africa

2

1,800

Spain

8

7,567

Sweden

10

9,298

Switzerland

5

3,263

Ukraine

15

13,107

2

1,900

United Kingdom

19

10,137

USA

104

101,240

1

1,165

Total

432

365,837

65

62,862

Source

This is not a complete list as Israel has Nuclear plants as well.

Inspectors are never allowed in there however.

Israel’s Dirty Nuclear Secrets, Human experiments and WMD

There is more information at the site on new ones being build as well.

Save Local TV Stations in Canada

I rather like them myself.

People in Europe watch them even. Seems many enjoy the A Channel and CTV. So I am thinking anyone who watches and enjoys these stations could sign the petition or send a message in their defense.

Both CTV and A Channel are valuable assets to all Canadians and others around the world. They both provide excellent news coverage as well. I have used both as a source of information many times. Their reporting is very well done and reliable.  They are both terrific stations.

Many people who cannot afford satellite or cable watch them as well as a few other stations that one can get with rabbit ears or antenna.

Those who cannot afford either cable or satellite need them to stay informed, otherwise would have nothing to watch at all.

So I think they need to be saved.

They have been part of the community for years and have served it well.

So please take the time to help them out. This could happen to many local stations not just ‘A’  Channel now owned by CTV. By saving one you may be saving many local stations and also saving jobs as well.

A Channel has helped out charities like food banks, walks and runs for Cancer, plus numerous other charities as well.  We owe them a few minutes of our time to help them after all they have done for the community.

Please take time to drop a line to the politicians or sign the petition or both.
They support a very large community in many endeavors, we need to support them.  They are always there  to lend a helping hand, now they need you to help them.
Be sure to share. Sharing is a good thing you know.  Remember if you save one,  you may save many local stations across Canada.

Save Canadian TV.

Canadians Send a Message
I Love Local TV

They need our help.

Local TV is in crisis due to an unfair broadcast policy.

Cable and satellite companies are charging you to view ‘A’ Ottawa and they receive nothing.

Without a fairer system, one that sees broadcasters reasonably compensated for their programming without consumers having to pay an additional price, local television will be lost forever.

If you love local, it’s time for your voice to be heard. Email our political leaders or sign the petition below.

SIGN THE PETITION at http://www.petitiononline.com/saveltv/petition.html

For more information go to: savelocal.ctv.ca

For more than 50 years, CTV and ‘A’ have been proud to serve your community. They are leaders not only in the quality of our local news and programming, but also in their commitment to the community.

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Prime Minister’s Office:

pm@pm.gc.ca
JAMES MOORE – HERITAGE MINISTER:
Parliamentary email

Moore.J@parl.gc.ca
Constituency email

moorej@parl.gc.ca
CRTC:
Internet:
http://www.crtc.gc.ca

By Phone:
Toll-free: 1-877-249-CRTC (2782)
Outside Canada: 819-997-0313
Toll-free TTY line: 1-877-909-CRTC (2782)
Outside Canada: 819-994-0423
Media inquiries: 819-997-9403

By mail:
Canadian Radio-television and Telecommunications Commission
Ottawa, Ontario
Canada, K1A 0N2

By fax:
819-994-0218
LOCAL MEMBERS OF PARLIAMENT:
Ottawa West – Nepean

Baird.J@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa – Vanier

Belanger.M@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa Centre

Dewar.P@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa – Orléans

Galipeau.R@parl.gc.ca
Renfrew – Nipissing – Pembroke

Gallant.C@parl.gc.ca
Stormont – Dundas – South Glengarry

Lauzon.G@parl.gc.ca
Ottawa South

McGuinty.D@parl.gc.ca
Carleton – Mississippi Mills

OconnG@parl.gc.ca
Nepean – Carleton

Poilievre.P@parl.gc.ca
Lanark – Frontenac – Lennox
and Addington

Reid.S@parl.gc.ca

Attorney General stays sewage prosecution, Chapman v. BC

Attorney General stays sewage prosecution, Chapman v. BC, GVRD & GVSDD

December 8th, 2008

Fraser Riverkeeper Doug Chapman

On November 18, 2008, the Attorney General of Canada ordered a “stay” in the private prosecution investigated by Doug Chapman, now the Fraser Riverkeeper, who worked with the Georgia Strait Alliance, the T. Buck Suzuki Environmental Foundation, and United Fishermen and Allied Workers Union (CAW).

The prosecution, Ecojustice, argued the city of Vancouver and the BC government violated the Canadian Fisheries Act by allowing the release of barely treated sewage into the Georgia Strait from the Iona Sewage Treatment Plant.

Almost a billion juvenile salmon have to pass through this area annually.  In 2005, testing revealed chemicals released from Iona included heavy concentrations of Polycyclic Aromatic Hydrocarbons (PAHs), Ammonia, Mercury, Zinc, Arsenic, Cadmium, Lead and Copper – all of which are toxic to fish.

The Attorney General (AG) brought the private prosecution to an end in mid-November after a two-year battle in the courts. In Canadian law people have the right to initiate a private prosecution when an individual or group gathers evidence of a wrongdoing. They lay charges with approval from a Provincial Court Judge. However, the federal Attorney General’s Office retains the right to:

  • Intervene and “stay” the case (an indefinite suspension only the AG can restart); or
  • Intervene and conduct the following: call witnesses, examine and cross-examine, present evidence, and make submissions

“I am disgusted that the federal government has ended this prosecution,” Chapman told local media. “What’s the point of the law? Polluters get off scot-free.”

Doug Chapman is one of Canada’s most experienced environmental prosecutors, with numerous high-profile convictions in Ontario, including the first ever jail-sentence for an environmental criminal.

How the case came to such strange end is the subject of this week’s Living at the Barricades.

Source

ONTARIO IS THE CHILD POVERTY CENTRE OF CANADA

Poverty is corrosive

By MARYANNE FIRTH

November 27 2008

Niagara residents were taught that local communities are guardians of poverty reduction.

About 60 people visited regional council chambers yesterday to learn how to put a plan in motion to reduce poverty in Ontario by 25 per cent over the next five years.

Social Planning Network of Ontario community co-ordinator Peter Clutterbuck and consultant Marvyn Novick made their stop in Thorold yesterday to discuss a blueprint for change and the importance communities have in that process.

Based on statistics and scenarios discussed during the meeting, social justice activists and their supporters have their work cut out for them.

There are nearly 1.3 million people living in poverty in Ontario, said Novick.

“Chronic poverty is corrosive and eats away at a healthy and inclusive Ontario.”

Ontario is also the child poverty centre of Canada, he said.

When the blueprint was written only months ago, 41 per cent of Ontario children in poverty were living with one parent working fulltime, all year. But the number has since risen to an alarming 45 per cent, he said.

There “isn’t any reason to justify working fulltime, full year and living in poverty,” Novick said.

Clutterbuck said he and Novick are in the midst of a 25-city tour, presenting their plan and gaining feedback from community members to see where changes may need to be made.

He said they hope to provide a “consensus” or “community-tested” document to the provincial government for consideration when completed.

Novick said the main reason poverty reduction is on the government’s agenda is that communities across Ontario stepped forward and got involved.

Premier Dalton McGuinty made a commitment in his first term to develop a poverty reduction strategy by the end of 2008. The plan is expected to be released within the next few weeks, including targets and indicators to be met.

Novick believes this commitment was made because communities were voicing their concerns on the issue.

The premier’s plan will be a foundation of the 25 in 5 Network – a group of organizations and individuals across the province committed to eliminating poverty.

The 25 in 5 target is “not an end, but a beginning,” said Novick. The goal is to evolve to a 50 per cent reduction rate in 10 years.

The biggest issue is that “poverty reduction has never been considered imperative,” he said.

“Imperatives are not choices, but something urgent that requires action.”

He called poverty reduction “easy to talk about and easy to delude about.”

“People always express concern,” he said, but unfortunately, there’s never a right time for action.

“We’re told we can’t invest in poverty reduction with good times or bad.”

To start, communities must change the common view about those struggling with poverty.

Novick said poverty is viewed as a reflection of personal failure.

The misconception is that people made bad choices and are morally or intellectually deficient because of their situation.

There is a “cold language” involved when talking about poverty that appears reasonable, he said. People use personal failure language, which “says ugly things with beautiful words.”

Dependency, passive and cycle of poverty, are some of the terms unfairly used to describe those stuck in the process, said Novick.

It’s assumed that for some people, social assistance is considered “a joy, it’s a free ride, something to aspire to,” he said. These types of words and the assumptions that surround them are “begging for evidence which is never submitted.”

These assumptions are presumed common sense, he said, and are therefore seen as not requiring evidence.

He said it’s time to stop the moral defamation people on social assistance or disability go through.

Change also needs to come from the government, because only structural change in the system can improve the living conditions facing families across the province.

The government should be modelling economic strategies after countries including Denmark, Finland and Sweden, he said. These countries “have low levels of poverty, strong public programs and strong public revenue.”

“High taxes are not good or bad, it’s what you do with them.”

The best way to deal with hard times is to improve the income of vulnerable families and adults, he said.

“Poverty reduction is the key to economic success.”

When increasing income, the money will be spent immediately in the local economy because people are out buying the necessities they need.

Novick called this idea “smart economics.”

System restructuring also needs to be done in areas such as the labour market and social assistance, he said.

Novick said raising minimum wage doesn’t eliminate jobs, but rather “changes bad jobs into good jobs.”

The government also has to look at the gap between income and social assistance, he said.

Ontario has to commit itself to increasing the Ontario Child Benefit to $1,500 from $1,100 because social assistance “only pays for the living needs of adults,” said Novick, who would like to see the maximum federal child benefit payment raised to $5,200 from $3,300.

One of the two pennies cut from GST could easily have paid for the payment raise, with money left over to invest in child care, he said.

Employment insurance also needs restructuring, as only three of 10 workers are able to receive funds when going through the risk of unemployment, said Novick.

To make these changes, communities need to band together and request that action be taken, he said.

“Poverty reduction is our common responsibility, our collective responsibility.”

For more information on poverty reduction visit www.povertywatchontario.ca or www.25in5.ca.

Source

Too many B.C. children living below poverty

By Matt Pearce
November 25 2008

On Friday the statistics on child poverty in Canada came out and once again for the fifth year running, B.C. was the worst in Canada.

Twenty-two per cent of our non-reserve children live below the poverty line as compared with the Canadian average of 16 per cent. This year’s statistics reflect 2006 conditions when the economy was running hot, so we can expect similar if not worse numbers now.

Coincidentally, we dropped to last the year that our current provincial government took power and made sweeping cuts to all services to children, including child and family services and public education.
Why should we be concerned? Children living in poverty drop out of school much more often, get involved with the justice and correctional system earlier and have poorer health outcomes throughout their lives. In short, they cost our society many times more than reducing child poverty would cost us.

The current ideologically driven government policies such as keeping the minimum wage down and reducing social assistance is a bit like paying off the mortgage while letting the roof rot and the foundation fail. The nearly 200,000 children living in poverty now in B.C. could be part of our positive future if we chose elected officials who could see past the next financial report card.
— Matt Pearce
Prince George

Source

The connection between mental illness and homelessness

Poverty in Canada is Very Real and Rising

Canadians using food banks at record levels

Published in: on November 28, 2008 at 5:22 am  Comments Off on ONTARIO IS THE CHILD POVERTY CENTRE OF CANADA  
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B.C. court says homeless can camp in parks

Jim Gibson

October 14, 2008

VICTORIA – The city’s homeless can now set up camp in Victoria parks, according to a B.C. Supreme Court decision Tuesday.

“Yesterday it was illegal to set up my tent. Today it isn’t,” said David Johnston, one of the homeless activists who argued they have a right to sleep outdoors on public property.

Lawyer Catherine Boies Parker, who acted on behalf of the homeless campers in their court challenge of the city’s anti-camping bylaw, confirmed the 108-page judgment upheld their argument that a City of Victoria bylaw that prohibits using “temporary abodes” like tents and large tarpaulins for shelter in parks and public spaces violates the rights of the homeless.

She said the judgment noted that in the absence of sufficient safe and secure beds for the homeless, it was unconstitutional for the city to prevent them from erecting some form of shelter to protect themselves from the elements.

The decision came three years after a group was arrested in October 2005 for setting up a “tent city” in a Victoria park. The eviction sparked the court challenge.

“We don’t have to search every morning and night for a place to sleep,” Johnston said.

He predicted that tent cities will spring up in other municipalities once the decision becomes widely known.

Such encampments “might be the thing which saves us from the economic crush,” he said.

At a city hall news conference, Mayor Alan Lowe predicted the impact of the decision will be felt throughout Canada.

“This judgment demonstrates what years of cuts to social programming and housing programs has done. Municipal governments were never in the business of providing housing and social support services to individuals in need,” Lowe said, calling on higher levels of government to respond to the court decision.

The judgment does not bode well for city parks, Lowe warned. “Our city parks are not equipped to support camping of any kind.

“We’ve seen first hand the ill effects of tent cities. In 2005 . . . we saw a tent city that had become a hub of illegal activity, health concerns and vandalism,” he said.

“These are not acceptable conditions for our parks and green spaces, but even more importantly these conditions are not acceptable for the homeless.”

Lowe said there were no winners with the judgment. “This is still no way to accommodate our homeless and will be detrimental to the families and children that enjoy our park system.”

At the conference, acting police Chief Bill Naughton said police will respond “situationally” to any homeless encampments.

“We’ll see what confronts us and act accordingly,” he said.
Officers can still respond to criminal behaviours, infractions, despite ruling

Rob Shaw

October 16, 2008

Victoria’s police chief says his officers will still enforce existing laws and bylaws if the homeless community builds tent cities on public property in the wake of a recent Supreme Court ruling.

“The toolbox is not empty,” interim chief Bill Naughton said yesterday. “This is a very narrow judgment with very narrow impact, and it’s important to try to not extract more from the judgment than what it says.

“It is not a carte blanche for a tent city, or open season, or [any] of those things.”

On Tuesday, a B.C. Supreme Court judge ruled that a city of Victoria bylaw, which prohibits people from erecting tents and large tarpaulins for shelter in parks and public spaces, violates the rights of the homeless.

The ruling said that in the absence of sufficient safe and secure beds for the homeless, it was unconstitutional for the city to prevent them from erecting shelter for protection.

The court case was launched after city broke up a tent city in Cridge Park, at the corner of Blanshard and Belleville streets, in 2005. Yesterday, Naughton said what started then as a political movement was quickly compromised by drug addicts and criminals.

“What you saw was a downward spiral in terms of behaviour as the population began to shift,” he said.

There were assaults among campers and drug activity, he said, along with numerous at-risk vulnerable youth found living at the site.

Enforcing criminal laws — possession of drugs, assaults, etc. — and bylaw infractions, such as fires, was key to controlling the community, he said.

“All those behaviours are unaffected by this judgment,” said Naughton.

“You still can’t light a fire in a public park, or do any of those things. There are still existing bylaws to manage those behaviours. And obviously we’re going to respond to those behaviours. As I said, the [legal] decision doesn’t contemplate the establishment of a permanent tent city.”

Still, the police are looking for direction from city council once it decides how to deal with the campers, some of whom have already set up tents in Beacon Hill Park.

Recent police practice has been to generally let homeless people sleep undisturbed between 11 p.m. and 7 a.m., whereupon officers roust them from doorways and parks and ask them to move along.

That will continue, for now, said Naughton. But it will be up to council to decide whether the leniency continues or applies to future campers, he said.

Officers remain overworked as they handle numerous mental health and homelessness calls, said Naughton.

If a tent city does appear, and grows, the police workload will increase significantly, he said. “But at this point I think it’s premature to speculate,” said Naughton.

No special patrols were planned for tents erected at Beacon Hill Park last night.

Police are expected to seek direction from council today at a meeting at city hall.

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