U.S., Canada slow to tackle Great Lakes chemical pollution, says report | MLive.com

http://www.mlive.com/news/index.ssf/2017/01/ijc_tap_great_lakes_report.html

“In November, the IJC issued a 25-page report advising both governments take decisive steps to protect human health and the environment by reducing polybrominated diphenyl ethers (PBDEs) in the lakes. The brominated flame retardants, which are bioaccumulative and found in many products, have been in use since the 1970s and exposure has been linked to cancers, reproductive health, thyroid, neurobehavioral and developmental disorders.”

US and Canada efforts towards cleaning up PCBs and other toxic chemicals in Au Sable river and Lake Huron.

Concerned Alaska Native, First Nation representatives attend Seabridge Gold annual meeting – Alaska Journal of Commerce – Breaking News 2015 – Anchorage, AK

http://www.alaskajournal.com/Alaska-Journal-of-Commerce/Breaking-News-2015/Concerned-Alaska-Native-First-Nation-representatives-attend-Seabridge-Gold-annual-meeting/

“We’ve come to Toronto to ask Seabridge whether it will publicly support an International Joint commission review,” Olsen said in a press release. “We’re deeply concerned about the unprecedented downstream risks to our people, who rely on the health of our rivers for their livelihoods. As with the Pebble Mine, the long-term risks outweigh the rewards.”

Mining project in British Columbia will impact tribal lands an rivers and livelihood …..possible IJC review. Touch on link to read more.

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Historic 2011 US and Canada flooding prompts water study – Washington Times

http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/may/17/historic-2011-us-and-canada-flooding-prompts-water/

Excerpt from WashingronTimes on historic flooding:
IJC Future steps could include recommendations for flood control structures, such as a dam that was begun in the 1930s in Quebec but was never finished.

Low-lying areas around the lake in Vermont and New York were inundated by the spring runoff that kept the lake above flood stage for more than two months in 2011.

Read more: http://www.washingtontimes.com/news/2015/may/17/historic-2011-us-and-canada-flooding-prompts-water/#ixzz3aS5dC7cc 
Follow us: @washtimes on Twitter

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IJC releases draft of plan for Lake of the Woods | Kenora Daily Miner and News

Excerpt on efforts of IJC on Lake level issues resolution:

“We would like to thank the experts working in the basin on these issues, the International Multi Agency Arrangement partners, the International Rainy-Lake of the Woods Watershed Board and its community and industry advisory groups and Canadian and U.S. indigenous communities for their contribution to the draft water quality plan of study,” said the board’s Canadian study co-chairman Glenn Benoy.

The over 100-page plan is quite detailed and lays out the principles and approaches to be taken while studying the many issues facing the Lake of the Woods basin on both sides of the border.

It includes frameworks with how to interact and involve all of the different governments, communities, private interest and First Nations, which all have a stake in the lake and the research being done.

Continue reading

Controversies – Only Half of Chemical Contaminants in Great Lakes are Removed by Treatment Plants – AllGov – News

The International Joint Commission releases a new report on the health of the Great Lakes. Excerpts from the report:

Noting that the focus of environmental monitoring has recently “shifted to an array of recently discovered compounds known as ‘chemicals of emerging concern’,” the report states that CECs are “found in products used daily in households, businesses, agriculture and industry, such as flame retardants, pharmaceuticals, personal care products, and pesticides.”

To determine how well wastewater treatment plants on the Great Lakes are handling CECs, IJC conducted a study from 2009 to 2011 of their operations and of the effectiveness of various wastewater treatment technologies at removing 42 specific CECs.

The study found that six chemicals (an herbicide, an anti-seizure drug, two antibiotics, an antibacterial drug and an anti-inflammatory drug) were detected frequently and had a low rate of removal in treated effluent, while five more had a low rate of removal, but not frequent detection. The main finding was that “at least half of the 42 substances examined…are likely to be removed in municipal wastewater treatment plants.”

http://www.allgov.com/news/controversies/only-half-of-chemical-contaminants-in-great-lakes-are-removed-by-treatment-plants-131124?news=851740

New Democrats Motion Passes: Navigable Waters Protection Act

The NDP convention considered the following motion:

2-06-13 Resolution to Reverse changes to Fish Habitat Protection, to Navigable Waters Protection, and to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act

Submitted by Gaspésie-Iles-de-la-Madeleine, Dartmouth—Cole Harbour

WHEREAS, instead of strengthening habitat protection and environmental oversight, the Conservative government has: gutted the Fisheries Act and the Navigable Waters Protection Act; weakened the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act; cut funding for science and research; and continues to ignore the threats of climate change to Canada’s oceans; and

BE IT RESOLVED that New Democrats call on the Conservative Government to reverse changes to fish habitat protection, to Navigable Waters Protection, and to the Canadian Environmental Assessment Act;

and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that the federal government immediately implement the 75 recommendations identified in the Cohen Commission Report, and

BE IT FURTHER RESOLVED that cuts to funding for fisheries science and ecosystem management be restored

MP Robert Chisholm spoke in favour of this motion.

MP Philip Toone (Gaspésie—Îles-de-la-Madeleine) spoke in favour.

Motion passed.

Canada Vows to Protect 10% of Coastline: NDP Resolution Passes!

2-01-13 Resolution on Coastal and Marine Area Protection Submitted by Dartmouth—Cole Harbour WHEREAS, Canada has the longest coastline in the world and Canadians expect and deserve healthy oceans and marine areas for present and future generations. BE IT RESOLVED, that the following clause be added to section 2.1 of the policy book. New Democrats believe in: – Canada’s commitment to protect at least 10% of coastal and marine areas by 2020 as committed to under the UN Convention on Biological Diversity. http://blogs.canoe.ca/davidakin/environment/ndp-convention-2-01-13-resolution-on-coastal-and-marine-area-protection/#.UWlxsT6MgbQ.twitter