Doug Ford’s Changes to Social Assistance Will Push Ontarians Into Homelessness, Service Providers Warn


Ford government billed its changes as ‘compassionate’

As Doug Ford’s government gets ready to overhaul social assistance programs, Ontario service providers are warning Ford’s changes, billed as “compassionate,” could force many recipients into homelessness.

Ford’s plan to cancel the Transition Child Benefit and raise assistance clawbacks has already drawn the ire of many service providers.

Earlier this year, Toronto City Manager Chris Murray wrote in a note to city council that Ford’s cuts will increase the strain on municipal services, including its family shelter system. Similar concerns were raised by social service managers in WaterlooLondon and Windsor.

The HIV & AIDS Legal Network Ontario — which provides legal support to many Ontarians with disabilities — has noted average recipients of both Ontario Works and the Ontario Disability Support program will be poorer once eligibility is recalculated.

Under the new rules, Ontario Works recipients will only be able to keep up to $300 of net earned income each month, while ODSP recipients will only be able to keep up to $6,000 per year — every dollar recipients earn beyond those targets will reduce assistance by 75%.

HALCO community legal worker Jill McNall said “the new rules will mean that many people on OW/ODSP who work will be poorer than they were before.”

“Many will be below any credible poverty line,” McNall told PressProgress. “They will be at risk of homelessness.” MORE

California just passed a bill that will make Uber and Lyft drivers employees

The move is a major blow for the ride-hailing firms—and a victory for gig workers in the state.

The news: California’s state senate has passed a bill that will make Uber and Lyft drivers, among other gig workers, employees instead of independent contractors. The bill, called AB5, will now head to Governor Gavin Newsom for approval. Newsom had previously said he would back the bill, so it is all but certain to be turned into law and then go into effect in 2020.

AB5 has received support from presidential candidates Elizabeth Warren, Bernie Sanders, and Kamala Harris. Though Uber and Lyft drivers are still considered independent contractors under federal law, experts say the bill is likely to influence other states to pass similar bills and set up a big fight over the future of work. Already, labor groups in New York have their eye on a similar bill.

ABCs: Ride-sharing companies insist that drivers aren’t employees because they own their own cars, set their own hours, and can work for competitors. The bill requires companies to instead use a legal standard called “the ABC test” to figure out whether someone is an employee or not. The three requirements are that the worker is “free from control” of the hiring company, the work is outside the company’s main business, and the worker has an independent business beyond this job.

AB5 has lots of exceptions—for example, freelance writers, real estate agents, and lawyers—but ride-share drivers are not exempted.  Uber, Lyft, and other gig economy firms would have to apply these three requirements to their drivers, and if they don’t pass, the drivers must be classed as employees. The two firms would then have to offer their drivers minimum wage and, among other benefits, overtime pay, sick leave and family leave, and contributions to Social Security and Medicare. Workers could also be reimbursed for mileage and for maintaining their vehicles.

Fighting back: In the weeks leading up to the vote, Uber and Lyft became increasingly desperate,  offering drivers a $21 minimum wage while on a trip. After it became clear that the bill was likely to pass, Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash said they would spend $90 million on a campaign to let residents vote on whether drivers should have a new, non-employee classification instead.

What’s next: It’s unclear. Companies have claimed that there will be fewer drivers on the road after the bill goes into effect, and Uber has said that it will continue to litigate employment cases. Gig workers usually agree not to be part of class action lawsuits against the company when they sign up, so it could be hard for cases to go to court—which means it’ll be hard to enforce the bill. Plus, details of the plan to make a third worker classification have not been made public. Passing the bill is a big deal, but a lot of questions remain.  SOURCE

Who’s responsible for the ecocide in the Amazon

They are killing the Amazon – and it’s not just Bolsonaro, nor is it just Morales or Correa. There is more to it than meets the eye.

August 24, 2019, Porto Velho, Brazil: Aerial scenes show fires in various regions of the Jamari Forest Reserve, near Porto Velho, Rondonia. Photo: Dario Oliveira/Zuma Press/PA Images. All rights reserved.

There’s a cause for alarm as the world witnesses how the Amazon forests in Brazil, the Bolivian Chiquitanía and the Paraguayan swamps are being ravaged by uncontrolled fires. Approximately one million hectares of high biodiversity forests have been damaged so far by these fires, which are impressive, recurring, and quite obviously intentional.

We are facing a catastrophe greater than anything previously seen, the consequences of which are unpredictable. The only apparent certainty that experts are willing to share is that regenerating these forests to their prior condition would take some 200 years. Noam Chomsky has defined what is happening as a “crime against humanity.”

The president of Brazil, Jair Bolsonaro, appears today as the main culprit because, ever since his presidential campaign, he has been delivering hate speeches against indigenous peoples and their territories, calling them a “hindrance to development”. He has also attacked NGO-supported conservationist policies and current legislation limiting the expansion of agriculture and stockbreeding, as well as mining and oil drilling.

Bolsonaro, who has the support of big investors and entrepreneurs, is championing a systematic plan to exploit and plunder the Amazon and any other resource-rich territory, arguing that the “the Amazon belongs to Brazilians.”

Data confirming that the looting has already begun can be found in the latest National Institute for Space Research (INPE) reports which show that in the first seven months of this year, the rate of deforestation in the Brazilian Amazon has increased by 278%; and that the Amazonian territories ravaged by fire during this period are estimated at some 18.600 square kilometres (a 62% increase from last year) – to which should be added the fires that are still burning to this day.

What we are facing here is nothing more and nothing less than a planned, systematic ecocide that ought to be judged by the whole mankind, and those responsible for it held to account. But over and above Brazil’s president, it is crucial to consider the role of and the pressure by the Brazilian business sectors behind the progress of the industries which are deforesting the Amazon – and to claim their liability.

This is a problem that transcends the “Left vs. Right” political ideologies

We should be acutely aware of the fact that the deforestation and the burning of the Amazon and other high biodiversity ecosystems which are critical for the eco-systemic balance and the reproduction of life on the planet is not something that has materialized with Bolsonaro, nor will it be solved simply by removing Bolsonaro.

This is a problem that transcends the “Left vs. Right” political ideologies, which are being presented to the voters as part of an illusory representative democracy which really only “represents” the factual powers of a world-system that is driving us to the extinction of life – including human life – on this planet.

…Clearly, the problem with the depredation of the Amazon and, in general, of the last high biodiversity forests on the planet, is that there is not necessarily a certain government or political tendency responsible for it. It responds, rather, to a systemic ideology, a so far unquestioned and unquestionable paradigm – a paradigm called capitalism. Today we are witnessing how, rather than being a system of life, capitalism is in fact a system of death highly efficient at creating inequalities and exploiting nature to its final consequences.

Neoliberalism, progressivism, globalization and developmentalism turn out to be ultimately the very same formula for accelerating natural resource extraction in the speediest possible way, accumulating capital and, hence, accumulating power. They call it “Development” when in fact its negative results in ecological and social terms only come to show that it is “Bad Development“. This is, in José María Tortosa’s words, the kind of system we have: a “bad developer” system. MORE

Outlawing ‘ecocide’: The battle to make a crime of environmental destruction

Picture courtesy of crustmania

CommonSpace speaks to Cath Andrews of Ecological Defence Integrity, who seek to have wide-scale environmental destruction ranked alongside genocide and war crimes under international law

AS ENVIRONMENTAL activists around the world press for greater action to combat the climate emergency, much attention has understandably been paid to their high-profile campaigns, such as this year’s climate strikes, and to proposed legislative solutions, such as the various formulations of a Green New Deal being considered in both the United States and Scotland.

However, Ecological Defence Integrity, a non-profit organisation founded in 2017 by the late UK barrister Polly Higgins and the environmental campaigner Jojo Mehta, is now working towards a legal approach to ending environmental destruction – by gaining recognition of ‘ecocide’ as an atrocity crime in the International Criminal Court.

As defined by the EDI, ecocide is the “serious loss, damage or destruction of ecosystems, and includes and climate and cultural damage.” Should this be recognised as an atrocity crime, it would rank alongside genocide, war crimes and crimes against humanity in international law.

Ahead of the International Criminal Court’s annual conference at the Hague in December, CommonSpace spoke with EDI representative Cath Andrews about ongoing efforts to ratify and enforce a law against the large-scale destruction of the natural living world.

Under the rules of the ICC, any member-state, regardless of size, can propose an amendment to the court’s governing document, the Rome Statue. This amendment can be adopted with a two-thirds majority. Coupled with the fact that any member state can then ratify and enforce, this makes it the only global forum where ecocide can be outlawed by those nations which suffer from its effects – and place those who continue to pollute in the dock.

Regarding the future prospects of such a law, Andrews explains: “The earliest an amendment could be proposed is 2020 (three months must pass before it can be discussed at a meeting of States Parties).

“We have not yet drawn the necessary line making ecosystem destruction morally unacceptable – and that is what is needed.” Cath Andrews, Ecological Defence Integrity

“We are working with Pacific small island states. Diplomatic confidentiality means that we are unable to disclose all developments, but leading Pacific voice Vanuatu has publicly acknowledged working with us.”

Despite the process of enacting such a law being in the early stages, Andrews argues that its eventual success is “inevitable”, given the urgency of the current global environmental situation.

“We believe a law of this kind will be inevitable at some point given the current state of ecological emergency we are witnessing,” says Andrews. “We consider it our job to speed up its establishment, and that’s why we’re working with those who have the biggest incentive to table it – the islands at the sharp end of climate change who are already going underwater, suffering typhoons and extreme weather events on a regular basis.”

While there may be a sense of moral outrage amongst many over the current climate emergency and what activists view as an insufficient response from the world governments, the EDI’s hopes of bringing a binding legal component to the crisis go further, Andrews explains – something which has proven to be a source of difficulty in advancing a recognition of ecocide in international law.

“Our main obstacle is one of perception,” Andrews says. “Those who are deeply embedded in the current economic thinking find it very hard to grasp what many land-based and indigenous cultures know as the simple truth – we cannot continue to destroy the ecosystems that sustain us if we are to survive and thrive on this planet.

“But we have not yet drawn the necessary line making ecosystem destruction morally unacceptable – and that is what is needed. In our so-called ‘first world’ culture, that line is drawn by criminal law. No amount of climate litigation will draw it, and no amount of regulation will draw it. As one head of a UK bank said a few years ago, when asked why the bank continued to fund ecocidal activities: ‘It’s not a crime.’”

Despite the EDI’s focus on international law, Andrews does not discount the necessity of legislative and campaign-based efforts to combat environmental destruction.

“All are important,” Andrews argues, “but it is criminal law that shifts the cultural moral baseline. The harm will continue until it is no longer permitted. So, while political and campaigning approaches are all hugely helpful, without ecocide law they are infinitely steeper roads to climb.

“We see this law as the key to unlocking a different way of approaching both human activity and our relationship with the natural living world.  It shifts the baseline towards a fundamental principle of ‘first do no harm’.”  SOURCE


Adaptation isn’t enough. We’ve got to throw everything at the climate crisis

Jonathan Franzen is the latest figure to preach the gospel of adaptation. But without cutting emissions, it won’t work

Illustration: Eva Bee/The Guardian

When we’re faced with threats of inundation, our reaction has traditionally been to build walls. Sea-level rises, storms and floods have been held back with solid barriers, seawalls and dykes. We have used walls to keep out people, too: the fact that this has failed throughout the ages has not stopped its recent revival in the United States.

The climate crisis threatens global sea-level rises of well over half a metre if we fail to act, while tidal storm surges will reach many times that height. Fiercer and more frequent hurricanes will batter us, and millions of people who live in areas where crops have failed and wells run dry will be forced to flee their homes. But walls will not work with the climate crisis, even if the temptation to try to keep out the consequences, rather than dealing with the causes, is as strong as ever.

The prospect of a “climate apartheid”, in which the rich insulate themselves from the impacts of the climate emergency while the poor and vulnerable are abandoned to their fate, is now real. According to the UN, climate-related disasters are already taking place at the rate of one a week, though only a few of them – such as Hurricane Dorian – get reported.

Nowhere on Earth will be untouched, with the number of people facing water shortages set to leap from 3.6 billion today to 5 billion by 2050. At least 100 million people will be plunged into poverty in the next decade, and in the decades following that, rising sea levels will swamp coastal cities from Miami to Shanghai, wiping $1tn a year from the global economy. Agriculture will become increasingly difficult, with more people displaced as a result, searching for liveable conditions elsewhere.

The Global Commission on Adaptation, headed by Bill Gates and Ban Ki-moon, warned this week that we have failed to plan adequately for a crisis that is now upon us. At a series of high-level meetings beginning in the next few weeks, and continuing into next year, world leaders and representatives of civil society and businesses will try to devise a better response. Among the questions they face will be how to set new targets, secure new funding and take more effective action to help the world not just prevent further warming, but to adapt to the impacts already being felt.

Currently, 20 times more is being spent on reducing emissions than building resilience to the effects of rising temperatures and extreme weather, according to the Commission on Adaptation. That seems patently unbalanced, and neglecting adaptation is putting millions of people and their livelihoods in danger now, as well as storing up problems for the future.

What’s more, money invested today will pay dividends in the near future. Spending less than $2tn by 2030 would result in more than $7tn saved in damage avoided and better economic growth. These sums sound huge, but are a fraction of the amount the world will spend on infrastructure in the next decade.

And modern adaptation means more than building seawalls. Restoring natural features, such as mangrove swamps and wetlands, can do far more to protect coastal regions, as well as nurturing biodiversity and tourism. New technology will play a key role, as early warnings of extreme weather give people time to take shelter or protect their property. Engineering climate-ready infrastructure encompasses everything from porous pavements to urban trees to provide shade.

What’s clear is that we need to adapt and build resilience now, because climate change is no longer a comfortably faraway problem. The predicted ravages have come sooner than expected: heatwaves over much of the northern hemisphere last year, floods and extreme weather in south-east Asia, Arctic ice melting at unprecedented levels this summer, and Hurricane Dorian, one of the strongest ever recorded. Worse still, some of these effects are likely themselves to increase temperatures further, in a series of feedback loops. The fires in the Amazon are destroying a vital “carbon sink”. Shrinking ice reveals darker water that absorbs more heat than highly reflective snow. Melting permafrost releases methane, a greenhouse gas many times more powerful than carbon dioxide.

It is tempting, in the face of these events, to suggest that the game is up for trying to prevent climate change. The emissions reductions needed to stop it are so vast, and the changes to our way of life so total, that it may seem like all we can do is adapt to the consequences. The hastening prospect of a “climate apartheid” is morally revolting as well as politically alarming, and could lead to a kind of paralysis.

The view that adapting to inevitable climate change should be our priority, over futile and ruinously expensive attempts to cut emissions, has been spread by those who want to continue to emit CO2, come what may. Fossil fuel companies saw adaptation, along with the idea that we could geo-engineer our way out of trouble, as a way to keep selling oil while paying lip service to the climate science. Now it is gaining traction among more respectable thinkers. Jonathan Franzen, the American novelist and nature lover, whipped up a storm when he suggested in the New Yorker that: “In the long run, it probably makes no difference how badly we overshoot 2C … Every billion dollars spent on high-speed trains … is a billion not banked for disaster preparedness, reparations to inundated countries, or future humanitarian relief.”

It’s true that spending on adaptation is a good deal. It saves lives, and if used wisely could stave off the climate apartheid that experts foresee. But setting up adaptation versus emissions-cutting as an either-or choice is a grave mistake. Trying to adapt to the consequences of climate change while continuing to burn fossil fuels is like trying to mop up an overflowing sink while the taps are still running. As long as we continue to pump CO2 into the air, we are fuelling rises in temperature. We cannot outrun global heating any more than we can hold back the rising sea with dykes. And the fires blazing through the Amazon show that without action, things could easily get much worse.

It can seem that in a world of finite resources, we need to make a binary decision about where to put our efforts. That is an illusion. The truth is that dealing with the climate emergency requires an across-the-board approach, for the simple reason that all of our resources – economic, physical, social – are at stake. If we do not throw everything we can at the problem, there won’t be much left anyway. In short, there is no wall high enough to keep out the consequences of inaction on emissions. SOURCE


Scientific American: Shut Up, Franzen

A green new deal for nature

“To many people, modernity meant turning away from the natural world. The accelerating environmental crisis is putting our treatment of the rest of life on Earth back to the centre of our collective wellbeing. This is not about being kind to wildlife out of altruism or compassion, it is about securing the fundamental physical conditions of modern civilisation.”—Common Wealth Report

Plan to restore and rewild 25 percent of the UK to combat climate crisis put forward by progressive think tank Common Wealth.

Connecting greenspace across the country and bringing about more transparent discussions about UK land ownership could improve biodiversity and significantly offset emissions, a new report from Common Wealth argues.

Additionally, the plan outlines how new jobs could be created through the large-scale restoration of peatland, shifting ownership of grouse-hunting land, and greening decommissioned industrial areas. Farmers working on low-grade subsidised land would be incentivised to work on rewilding and maintaining that land.

Naomi Klein, global climate activist said: “This is exactly the kind of deep policy work we need if we are going to turn the Green New Deal from a slogan into a life-saving reality in the UK and around the world.”

Road map

The report is part of Common Wealth’s Road Map to a Green New Deal series, which calls for a transformation of the economy, outlining an increase in government investment to rapidly decarbonise the economy and create millions of well-paid jobs, a 100 percent renewable energy system, a public green transport network, and decent, affordable, zero-carbon housing for all.

The series includes reports by activist groups such as Greenpeace and Green New Deal for Europe, as well as think tanks like IPPR, NEF, and international policy thinkers.

Professor Simon Lewis, author of the report, said: “What is unique about this UK Restoration Plan is by focusing on connection, it combines helping wildlife and helping people adapt to climate change. This Green New Deal for Nature is about modest investments resulting in a big increases in the quality of all our lives.”

The report emphasises the benefit to rural communities, as well as giving urban, working-class communities more access to nature. It comes in the wake of recent calls from the National Audit Office that the government is not prepared for a new system of agricultural subsidies after the UK leaves the EU, leaving farmers exposed to risk.

Others have reported that UK farmers are scrambling to export surplus produce in the lead up to Brexit. Meanwhile, rewilding projects have taken off in recent years, with recent news that rewilding has caused white storks to spread across England for the first time in 600 years.

Practical and thoughtful

Lily Cole, actor and environmentalist said: “While technologists design fancy carbon-capture machines, nature offers us the simplest, most cost-effective and profound way to solve our environmental crisis.

“Re-thinking land use in the UK (and globally), offers us the opportunity to capture huge quantities of carbon, enhance biodiversity, and also improve our own human relationship to the land.

“There can be no doubt that re-wilding will be critical in the drive towards increased environmental sustainability: the question is how to do it.

This report offers practical and thoughtful ideas on how re-wilding might happen in the UK, for example by diverting agricultural subsidies to reward people for providing environmental services instead, or creating land corridors for wildlife between hedgerows.

“I hope the report is the beginning of a positive conversation on how we might turn this crisis into an opportunity.”

Vital contribution

Caroline Lucas, Green MP for Brighton Pavilion said: “A UK Green New Deal is vital to our future, and to the future of the 1.4 million young people who have joined inspiring school climate strikes across the globe.

The Green New Deal is a pluralistic, justice-focused economic plan for a rapid transition, and I welcome Common Wealth’s exciting and vital contribution, drawing on talents and energy from across the climate movement.” MORE

Canada’s Indigenous suicide crisis is worse than we thought

MaryAnn Mihychuk, Chair of the Standing Committee on Indigenous and Northern Affairs, speaks in the House of Commons about their report on Indigenous suicides on June 19, 2017. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Sean Kilpatrick

Note: This content may be emotionally difficult. The Hope For Wellness help line is 1-855-242-3310 or via online chat, Additional supports are available through We Matter.

A new report on Indigenous suicide in Canada has generated the most comprehensive picture of the crisis to date, despite health authorities continuing not to collect data about the problem.

Released at the end of June, the Statistics Canada report titled “Suicide among First Nations people, Métis and Inuit (2011-2016)” found that, overall, Indigenous people in Canada die by suicide at a rate three times as high as non-Indigenous Canadians.

While comprehensive, the report acknowledges there are limitations to the findings that likely result in underestimations of the actual rates. The report’s analysis includes a number of socio-economic factors, as well as comparative differences based on age, sex and location — on or off reserve.

The lead researcher of the report, Mohan Kumar, said he wants readers to remember that for each of the numbers in the report “there is a person behind them, and their deaths meant an incredible loss to family, friends, community and the society at large.”

He also contextualizes the findings in light of existing research that shows how aspects of colonization contribute to the Indigenous suicide crisis. So that the high rates, he says, shouldn’t be taken as indicative of personal, community or cultural failings.

Canada doesn’t track suicides specifically by Indigenous identity, and the process that Kumar and co-researcher Michael Tjepkema used to overcome this is important to look at, as are the limitations inherent to these findings. The findings are estimations not full counts, as they’re based on only a sample portion of the full population, and there are some population groups not surveyed.

But as Indigenous researchers Roland Chrisjohn and Shaunessy McKay wrote in Dying To Please You: Indigenous Suicide in Contemporary Canada, their 2017 book on the suicide crisis, discourse about the problem and solutions is often unhelpful and not evidence-based: “It sounds like drumbeats of a PR bandwagon, like Native people are being recruited to a mainstream viewpoint rather than being convinced with real data; with all parties repeating a mantra over and over again until they parrot it without any real understanding.”

Thus, the Statistics Canada report’s contributions in terms of new, fuller data analysis are important.

The report’s central finding — that First Nations people die by suicide at three times the rate of non-Indigenous Canadians, Inuit at nine times the rate, and Métis at two times — illustrates a crisis but is not likely to surprise those familiar with previous statistics. For those unfamiliar, it puts Inuit among the people with the highest rates of suicide anywhere in the world.

A Statistics Canada report found that Indigenous people die by suicide at a rate three times as high as non-Indigenous Canadians. But the report acknowledges there are limitations to the findings that likely result in underestimations of actual rates

The report examines each of the three groups separately, and is based on 2011 populations, when the census had 851,560 people self-identify as First Nations, 59,445 as Inuit and 451,795 as Métis .

The report estimates that there were 1,845 total deaths by suicide of the Indigenous population in Canada from May 10, 2011, through Dec. 31, 2016. This total consists of 1,180 First Nations people, 250 Inuit and 415 Métis.

Looking at it side by side with murder data can help contextualize the scale of the problem.

For the five years since StatCan started tracking homicides by Indigenous identity, there have been 710 recorded Indigenous victims of homicide. The number of estimated suicides from the StatCan report is approximately two and a half times larger, though it applies to a slightly longer period.



Election 2019 cheat sheet: the last four years in Canadian politics

A summary for political junkies…

Highlights of Canadian politics from 2015 to 2019. Photos by Adam Scotti/PMO, Andrew Meade, Alex Tétreault, Cole Burston and Michael Ruffolo

Justin Trudeau’s first four years as prime minister are officially coming to a close and it remains to be seen whether he and his government have done enough to be re-elected to office for a second shot at governing.

The Canadian political landscape looks vastly different from the promises of sunny ways that brought Trudeau to power. Here is a cheat sheet for the last four years:

Trudeau vs. Trump: every twitch and grunt

Canada’s relationship with the United States was famously described by Justin Trudeau’s father in 1969 as “sleeping with an elephant” — no matter how friendly the beast, one is nevertheless “affected by every twitch and grunt.” Donald Trump has proven to be the twitchiest and the gruntiest.

Trump stunned the world when he swept into office in 2016. From the beginning, Canadians wanted to know if Trudeau could assert himself with this brash real estate developer, a man who had called Mexicans rapists, bragged about grabbing women by the genitals and called for a travel ban on Muslims before getting elected.

Trudeau visited Trump at the White House in early 2017 and the two “affirmed their longstanding commitment to close co-operation” in a statement. But then Trump, who had already called NAFTA “the worst trade deal in history” on the campaign trail, ordered his administration to move forward with renegotiations. The U.S. issued big demands later in 2017, setting up Trudeau to declare he was “pushing back” a few months later, a move that was followed by the U.S. slapping tariffs on metals exports.

By the time Trudeau hosted Trump and other G7 leaders in Quebec in June 2018, the trade dispute was starting to turn nasty. Trump blew up the summit in a tweet after jetting off early, insulting the prime minister from Air Force One as a “dishonest” and “weak” man for the crime of standing up against the tariffs.

U.S. President Donald Trump and Prime Minister Justin Trudeau meet at the June 2018 G7 leaders meeting in Quebec. Photo by Fabien Durand / Equipe Photo G7


Canada made concessions in the new deal, USMCA, on auto imports, signing a provision restricting the country to 2.6 million passenger vehicle exports to the U.S. tariff-free, well above current levels. Canada also opened up a slice of its protected dairy market.

The fate of the deal is still uncertain. Canada’s ratification of the deal wasn’t passed by Parliament before it was dissolved Wednesday in preparation for the election, meaning the next Canadian government will have to pick up the project.

A wave of Tory blue across Canada

When Trudeau was first elected, an NDP government was in power in the country’s largest oil-producing region in Alberta, while a Liberal government was in charge in Canada’s most populous province, Ontario. Since then, a wave of Tory blue has swept across the country frustrating the prime minister’s attempts to align with the provinces and achieve his political goals. MORE