The fossil fuel era is coming to an end, but the lawsuits are just beginning

Mining company Westmoreland Coal, which purchased five coal mines in Alberta, is suing Canada for $470 million under NAFTA after the province legislated a phaseout of coal-fired power plants

“Coal is dead.”

These are not the words of a Greenpeace activist or left-wing politician, but of Jim Barry, the global head of the infrastructure investment group at Blackrock — the world’s largest asset manager. Barry made this statement in 2017, but the writing has been on the wall for longer than that.

Banks know it, which is why they are increasingly unwilling to underwrite new coal mines and power plants. Unions and coal workers know it, which is why they are demanding a just transition and new employment opportunities in the clean economy. Even large diversified mining companies are getting out of the business of coal. MORE

 

Fooling the People – Six months of Doug Ford

FordDoug Ford and the Progressive Conservative Party of Ontario have been in power for almost six months now. 

We knew that Ford’s agenda for Ontario would be a dangerous step backwards, that he would undo many of the progressive policies we’ve fought hard for over many years, but even we are stunned by how aggressive and undemocratic the Progressive Conservatives have been so far—and it looks like they are just getting started.

SECRET AGENDA

Here are just a few of the major initiatives the PCO government has undertaken that they never said anything about during the election campaign: MORE

2nd camp set up to block pipeline company’s access to Wet’suwet’en land

B.C. judge granted a temporary injunction for access by Coastal GasLink on Friday


Freda Huson speaking to supporters outside the Prince George courthouse before a hearing last week regarding the injunction application made by Coastal GasLink. (Chantelle Bellrichard/CBC)

A second checkpoint has been put up on a remote B.C. forestry road to block construction of the Coastal GasLink pipeline, days after a court ordered that the first one must stop preventing the company from accessing the road and a bridge.

An interim injunction order from a B.C. court last Friday ordered the individuals at the Unist’ot’en camp, a self-described re-occupation of Wet’suwet’en land, to stop impeding Coastal GasLink from gaining access to the logging road and bridge it argues is on a critical path it needs to access as part of pipeline construction.

The pipeline is part of an estimated $40 billion natural gas project slated for construction in B.C. The nearly 700 km long pipeline is meant to transport natural gas from northeastern B.C. to a liquefied natural gas plant slated for construction in the north coast community of Kitimat.  MORE

 

Minister McKenna provides update on Canada’s climate change plan

Minister of the Environment Catherine McKenna introduced three updates to Canada’s climate plan on Thursday that includes new regulations for vehicle emissions standards, pricing for heavy corporate polluters, and clean energy incentives for small businesses, not-for-profits, and indigenous communities.
Image result for CANADA December 20 2018 10:47am Minister McKenna provides upClick on the picture to watch the video

 

The Anti-Union Justin Trudeau

Trudeau is making an illegal push to end a major series of strikes. But unions can’t count on the courts to save them — only direct action can get the goods.


Justin Trudeau at the World Bank headquarters in Washington DC, March 2016. World Bank / Flickr.

Members of the Canadian Union of Postal Workers (CUPW), the country’s most militant union, have been negotiating a new contract since November 2017. They have been fighting for job security, pay equity, and health and safety. Canada Post made a profit of $144 million in 2017, thanks to growing parcel delivery due to online shopping. With the legalization of cannabis in Canada — available only for online home delivery in the largest province of Ontario — profits are expected to climb even higher. MORE

 

Tackle climate or face financial crash, say world’s biggest investors

UN summit urged to end all coal burning and introduce substantial taxes on emissions

Coal.

Global investors managing $32tn issued a stark warning to governments at the UN climate summit on Monday, demanding urgent cuts in carbon emissions and the phasing out of all coal burning. Without these, the world faces a financial crash several times worse than the 2008 crisis, they said.

The investors include some of the world’s biggest pension funds, insurers and asset managers and marks the largest such intervention to date. They say fossil fuel subsidies must end and substantial taxes on carbon be introduced. MORE

Cities Prepare to Face New Disasters

You can’t fight nature in terms of the calamities that have hit their cities, but you can learn to accommodate it — or, at least, “Stay out of nature’s way.”

NEW ORLEANS — We rarely do much to protect our cities until disaster strikes. We fool ourselves into thinking we are safe, until a catastrophic event shows us how wrong we are.

New York discovered that grim fact in Superstorm Sandy. Houston in Harvey. San Juan in Maria. And, of course, New Orleans after Katrina.

Cities that have been through a disaster learn one important lesson: “Nature wins.” MORE