The Conservative government has quietly begun looking into the charitable status of environmental groups in the Senate.
Senator Nicole Eaton is sponsoring an inquiry into what she calls "funding by foreign foundations." Eaton began her debate Tuesday by laying out what she considers to be a threat to the Canadian economy.
"This inquiry is about master manipulators who are operating under the guise of charitable organizations in an effort to manipulate our policies for their own gain," she said in the Upper Chamber.
Environmental groups don't see it that way.
"My fear is that they will just try to smear us and then walk away," said John Bennett, executive director of Sierra Club Canada. "And that they're hoping to frighten off U.S. foundations from supporting us... And they're going to try to turn off the public from supporting us."... Read more »
MEDIA RELEASE, Feb. 29, 2012
VANCOUVER, BC and OTTAWA, ON (February 29, 2012) – Today over 40 groups, from internationally-known organizations like Council of Canadians and Greenpeace, to local citizens’ groups like Grand Riverkeeper Labrador, have endorsed a statement confirming their support for strong federal environmental laws that protect our national values.
The groups warn that they will not stand by if the federal government moves to short-circuit environmental reviews for projects like the Enbridge Northern Gateway oil tankers and pipeline project, and they have rallied behind a statement of 10 principles they say form the basis of environmental assessment for a healthy, secure and sustainable Canada.... Read more »
After vowing to take on radical environmentalists determined to stop the Northern Gateway pipeline, the Harper government has released a new anti-terrorism strategy that targets eco-extremists as threats.
With his announcement this week, Public Safety Minister Vic Toews has increased the concern among environmentalists that Ottawa regards them as implacable adversaries to be monitored and battled, rather than well-meaning advocates to be consulted.
“This is just one more step in their attempt to marginalize the environmental movement and to quiet its voice,” John Bennett, executive director of Sierra Club Canada, said Friday. “It’s an indirect suggestion that somehow environmentalism is attached to terrorism and that’s just wrong.”... Read more »
In a report released yesterday outlining the federal government’s new counter-terrorism strategy, Public Safety Canada listed environmentalists among other “issue-based domestic extremists” that could pose a threat to Canadians.
Responding to the report, Sierra Club Canada director John Bennett said this portrayal is aligned with officials’ attempts to silence environmental groups opposed to major energy projects like the Northern Gateway pipeline.
“We are one of the few segments of Canadian society that has continually stood up to the present Conservative government and been able to be effective at raising issues," said Bennett.... Read more »
How many more coal ash spills need to happen before Americans are protected by coal ash safeguards? The latest happened Monday in Oak Creek, Wisconsin, at the We Energies Oak Creek Power Plant.... Read more »