National Newswatch

Hotter, larger fires turning boreal forest into carbon source: research

Aug 21 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Bigger, hotter wildfires are turning Canada's vast boreal forest into a significant new source of climate-changing greenhouse gases, scientists say. The shift, which may have already happened, could force firefighters to change how they battle northern blazes, said Merritt Turetsky, an ecologist at the University of Guelph and co-author of a paper that appeared in the […]

Northerners applaud funding for long-awaited road through Arctic tundra

Aug 15 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Two federal announcements this week are expected to kick-start a long-awaited road into the heart of the Canadian Arctic that would lower grocery costs for northern families and unlock billions of dollars in mineral resources. Transport Minister Marc Garneau pledged more than $50 million to cover preliminary studies and planning for an all-weather road from Yellowknife in […]

Deadline coming: Scientists tell environment minister to speed up conservation

Jul 26 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Some of North America's top conservation scientists have written to the federal government urging it to speed up land protection in Canada. The 32 scientists from 23 universities and other organizations say Ottawa is not on pace to meet the 2020 conservation targets it promised in an international agreement. The letter, addressed to federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna, also […]

Mercury tops out on top of the world: Alert in Nunavut warmer than Victoria

Jul 15 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Weather watchers are focused on the world's most northerly community which has been in the middle of a record-breaking heat wave. "It's really quite spectacular," said David Phillips, Environment Canada's chief climatologist. "This is unprecedented." The weather agency confirmed that Canadian Forces Station Alert hit a record of 21 C on Sunday. On Monday, the military listening post […]

‘Treated like mines:’ Feds mull stronger rules for Indigenous cultural property

Jun 23 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — The federal government is considering how to legally enshrine Indigenous people's ownership of traditional culture — from songs to art to the use of medicinal plants. Ottawa has signed agreements with the Assembly of First Nations and the Metis National Council to explore ways for Aboriginal communities to control and benefit from their cultural knowledge. "We want Indigenous people […]

“Other people’s skin:” Inuit sue government over medical experiments

Jun 21 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Five Inuit have filed a lawsuit against the federal government over medical experiments, including skin grafts, that they say were performed on them without their consent. A statement of claim filed in Iqaluit, Nunavut, says the experiments were performed in Igloolik between 1967 and 1973 and involved three Canadian universities working with an international scientific program. "They […]

U.S. ramps up concern over B.C. pollution; eight senators write to premier

Jun 17 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Eight U.S. senators say Canadian mines in British Columbia are endangering cross-border rivers through a combination of poor environmental assessments and inadequate monitoring. "We remain concerned about the lack of oversight of Canadian mining projects near multiple transboundary rivers that originate in B.C. and flow into our four U.S. states," says a June 13 letter […]

Federal carbon tax coming to Alberta in January: environment minister

Jun 13 2019 — Bob Weber, The Canadian Press — Ottawa plans to impose the federal carbon tax on Alberta starting Jan. 1 and federal Environment Minister Catherine McKenna says she has written the province about the decision. "We need to move forward to tackle climate change," McKenna said in Ottawa before question period on Thursday. "We see the impacts of climate change through extreme weather, including in […]