START A PETITION 27,000,000 members: the world's largest community for good
Mar 22, 2010
Focus: Health
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada
E-mal received from CBAN:
Action Alert. Please distribute widely.

Action Alert #2:

Support Bill C-474 – before Monday March 29, 2010 - Support Canada’s Farmers! You can stop GE Alfalfa and GE Wheat!

Write a letter to your MP instantly from  Take action this week! before March 29, 2010.

Your actions gave the Bill another chance! Private Members Bill C-474 will be debated for a second hour in Parliament March 29. The vote will happen a few days later. Even if you have already written your MP, you are encouraged to send another letter before March 29

Your concrete action could stop genetically engineered (GE) seeds from causing chaos in Canadian farming!

Bill C-474 would require that “an analysis of potential harm to export markets be conducted before the sale of any new genetically engineered seed is permitted.” The Bill could stop GE alfalfa and GE wheat.

This Bill is critically important because, as we know from experience, the introduction of new genetically engineered (GE) crops can cause economic hardship to farmers. Farmers are at risk when GE crops are commercialized in Canada without also being approved in our major export markets.

Flax farmers in Canada are now paying a heavy price because of this exact problem. Late last year, Canadian flax exports were discovered contaminated with a GE flax that is not approved in Europe or in any of our other export markets (except the U.S.). Flax farmers actually foresaw that GE contamination or even the threat of contamination would close their export markets. That's why they took steps in 2001 to remove GE flax from the market. Despite this measure, flax farmers were not protected. The GE flax contamination closed our export markets in 2009. It has created market uncertainty and depressed prices. Farmers are also paying for testing and cleanup and may be required to abandon their own farm-saved flax seed and buy certified seed instead. These costs are an unnecessary and preventable burden.

We cannot allow GE seeds to harm our export markets. Please support Bill C-474 and protect Canada’s farmers.

Write a letter to your MP instantly from  Take action before March 29, 2010.

Bill C-474 was introduced by Alex Atamanenko, the NDP Agriculture Critic and MP for British Columbia Southern Interior.

For updates, more info and action options  see or contact Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator, Canadian Biotechnology Action Network 613 241 2267 ext. 6

This action alert was issued by the Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN)

Lucy Sharratt, Coordinator 
Canadian Biotechnology Action Network (CBAN) 
Collaborative Campaigning for Food Sovereignty and Environmental Justice 
431 Gilmour Street, Second Floor 
Ottawa, Ontario, Canada, K2P 0R5 
Phone: 613 241 2267 ext.6
Fax: 613 241 2506 
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Posted: Mar 22, 2010 10:13am
Feb 10, 2010
Campus Outreach Ambassador – Earth Hour 2010

Number of Volunteers required: 50
Locations: Any Post-Secondary Institution in Canada

Time required: Part-time/Short-term – Minimum 20 Hours (total commitment) until March 27, 2010

Schedule: Volunteers will set their own schedules at their convenience

What is Earth Hour?

WWF’s global initiative where individuals, schools, organizations, businesses and governments turn off their lights for one hour to cast a vote in favor of action on climate change. By voting with their light switches, Earth Hour participants make a personal commitment to the planet while sending a powerful, visual message to their leaders demanding immediate action on climate change. Earth Hour takes place on Saturday March 27th, 2010 from 8:30 – 9:30 pm

Earth Hour – Campus Ambassadors
  • Visit campus businesses, campus networks, faculty, and staff, to inform and encourage their participation in Earth Hour on March 27th
  • Track and keep up to date outreach progress on excel worksheet
  • Update WWF-Canada Bi-Weekly about outreach progress
  • Distribute information through email to your personal networks
  • Utilize Social Media (Facebook, Twitter, etc.) to inform and encourage participation in Earth Hour 2010.
  • Represent WWF-Canada, and the Campaign, in a manner that professional, engaging, pleasant and courteous-at-all-times.
  • Volunteers will receive training and FAQs.
  • Volunteers are not required to answer questions beyond that of the Earth Hour Campaign, and will be expected to direct all other queries to WWF-Canada.
Volunteer skills and profile required
  • Dependable, presentable, energetic and passionate
  • Environmentally concerned
  • Basic knowledge of Earth Hour, training materials will be provided
  • Proficient with Excel, Internet and Google Documents
  • Ability to work independently
  • Accurate, efficient, excellent time management
  • Excellent communication skills
  • Excellent English comprehension and communication skills
  • Maintain a pleasant, courteous and professional demeanour at all times and under all conditions.
  • Must be a current student/faculty/or staff member at the campus

Notes on this position: You are welcome to apply to this position with a friend.

How to apply for this Volunteer Position
Interested and able to make the commitment?

Apply now


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Posted: Feb 10, 2010 5:46am
Jul 17, 2009
Focus: Environment
Action Request: Write E-Mail
Location: Canada

EBR Registry No.: 010-6516

As the government moves forward with the implementation of the Green Energy Act, the Ministry of Environment (MOE) has begun to draft the regulations that will guide the process and set the standard for the protection of natural heritage features. The first step is the Renewable Energy Approval regulation recently posted on the Environmental Registry for public comment. This regulation outlines the approval process for renewable energy projects. Several changes to the regulation are needed to ensure that the development of “green” energy is truly green and does not compromise the protection and restoration of Ontario’s natural heritage. You can now comment on the proposed regulation through the Environmental Registry. The deadline for comments is July 24, 2009.

The government should be applauded for its efforts to expand the use of clean and renewable sources of energy through its Green Energy and Green Economy Act, 2009. The new legislation aims to mitigate the impacts of climate change by facilitating the development of renewable sources of energy. To do so, it is removing barriers to development in part by streamlining the approval process for proposed projects.

What we need to ensure, however, is that in streamlining approvals, the government puts in place adequate protections for Ontario’s wildlife and natural environment. In responding to climate change we must keep in mind the importance of maintaining biodiversity and protecting natural communities and systems in order to enhance landscape resilience and options for adaptation.

Outlined below is a list of concerns that must be addressed.

  1. The key mechanism proposed for protecting natural heritage features is a 120 metre “setback” from significant features. To be effective, the significant natural heritage features to be protected through the approval process must include provincially, regionally and locally significant features. Given that the streamlined process will now bypass any protection formerly provided for locally and regionally significant features through municipal official plans, the new approval process must ensure that these features are protected. Project proponents must be required to assess and identify significant features (i.e. locally, regionally and provincially significant) within 120 metres of their proposed projects as part of their submission for approval.
  2. The proposed approval process explicitly prohibits projects from being sited within some natural heritage features (e.g., significant wetlands in southern Ontario, provincial parks and conservation reserves), but does not prohibit them within others (e.g. significant wetlands in northern Ontario, significant woodlands, significant valleylands, significant wildlife habitat, significant Areas of Natural and Scientific Interest). The approval process must explicitly prohibit the siting of projects within any locally, regionally or provincially significant natural heritage features.
  3. Despite the 120 metre setback, the proposed approval process would allow projects to be sited within the setback (i.e. closer to the natural heritage feature) if impacts are mitigated. There is no test, standard or threshold for the mitigation requirement, leaving the door wide open for projects to infringe upon the 120 metre setback. If green energy is to be truly green, the setback must offer a clear minimum standard for protection. The approval process must prohibit development within the 120 metre setback unless the project proponent can demonstrate that there will be no harm to the significant natural heritage feature.
  4. In other provincial guidelines, such as the Natural Heritage Reference Manual, the recommendation of a 120 metre buffer is acknowledged to be more than required to protect a natural feature in some cases, and less than required in other cases. Where it is determined (e.g. through public consultation) that the 120 metre buffer is likely to be insufficient, the Director issuing the approval must have the discretion to require the proponent to undertake further studies and to extend the buffer and/or mitigate the harmful impacts.
  5. The impacts of some forms of renewable energy are poorly understood and a subject of considerable controversy. In order to learn more about these impacts and improve our ability to address them, monitoring and assessing impacts will be critical. The approval process should require project proponents to prepare a monitoring plan as part of their submission for approval.

Make your voice heard! Let the Ministry of Environment know that the Renewable Energy Approval regulation must be revised to adequately protect Ontario’s natural heritage.

Please keep in mind that original responses are weighed more heavily than are form letters. We suggest that you use the points above to draft your own letter and either post it online to the link below or send a hard copy to the listed address by July 24, 2009. Be sure to reference the EBR registry number: 010-6516.

If you are pressed for time, a sample letter has also been prepared. Please cut and paste the text below, post it on the EBR or send a hard copy to the address at the bottom of this page.

Please send a copy of your letter to Ontario Nature at 366 Adelaide St., W., Suite 201, Toronto, ON M5V 1R9 or email to You can also fax your letter to (416) 444-9866.

For more information and to submit comments online click here:

Or send a hard copy to:

Marcia Wallace, Manager
Ministry of the Environment
Environmental Programs Division
Program Planning and Implementation Branch
55 St. Clair Avenue West, Floor 7
Toronto Ontario M4V 2Y7



Marcia Wallace, Manager
Ministry of the Environment
Environmental Programs Division
Program Planning and Implementation Branch
55 St. Clair Avenue West, Floor 7
Toronto Ontario M4V 2Y7

Dear Ms. Wallace,

RE: Proposed Ministry of Environment Regulation to Implement the Green Energy and Green Economy Act. EBR Registry No.: 010-6516

I would like to congratulate the government on its efforts to promote the development and use of renewable energy in Ontario. The Green Energy and Green Economy Act is a promising step towards mitigating the impacts of climate change.

At the same time, however, I am writing to express my concern about certain aspects of the proposed Renewable Energy Approval regulation. Revisions to the proposed approval process are necessary to ensure that “green” energy is truly green. The streamlining of the approval process must not compromise the protection of Ontario’s natural heritage, and therefore I urge you to make the following revisions to the regulation:

  1. Require project proponents to assess and identify locally, regionally and provincially significant natural heritage features within 120 metres of proposed projects as a condition of approval.
  2. Prohibit the siting of projects within any locally, regionally or provincially significant natural heritage features.
  3. Prohibit development within the proposed 120 metre setback unless the project proponent can demonstrate that there will be no harm to the significant natural heritage feature.
  4. Empower Director(s) issuing approvals to extend the 120 metre setback where necessary to prevent harm to a significant natural heritage feature.
  5. Require project proponents to prepare, as a condition of approval, a plan to monitor and assess project impacts on the natural environment.

I appreciate the opportunity to comment on the proposed regulation. I trust that it will be revised along the lines suggested above so that it offers adequate protection for Ontario’s wildlife and natural environment. Only then can Ontario hope to position itself as a world leader in the development and use of “green” energy.

Yours truly,
Your name and address

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Posted: Jul 17, 2009 12:03pm


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