Last week TransCanada Corp announced its withdrawal from the 1.1 million barrel per day Energy East pipeline project in Canada. The cancellation of this $15.7 billion project has created much unrest or satisfaction depending where you live in Canada. The pipeline’s concept was to take oil east for domestic use and exports abroad. The pipeline… Read More

What’s the value of public opinion? That’s a question I find myself asking more often these days. In a democracy, public opinion should matter and politicians and policy makers should have a strong understanding of the people’s will when making public policy. But should they give the people what they want? Today we have no… Read More

Around the globe, agriculture and food systems produce about 2,850 calories per person per day. That’s enough to feed the world explains University of Guelph professor Evan Fraser, but unfortunately we still have 800 million people who are undernourished. Even more perplexing is the fact that we have 2 billion people who struggle with being… Read More

Late last week, Canada’s federal, provincial, and territorial governments announced concluded negotiations of a new Canadian Free Trade Agreement (CFTA). The CFTA replaces the existing Agreement on Internal Trade (AIT), which has been in place since 1995. The CFTA will take effect July 1, 2017, and is designed to “reduce barriers to trade, investment, and worker mobility” between… Read More

Recently, the federal government released “emergency” rules regarding recreational use of drones (UAVs), significantly restricting where and when drones could be used. Citing a 200% increase in commercial flight incidents with drones in just two years, the transport minister says the new rules begin immediately, with fines of up to $3,000 for violations. Commercial drone pilots already… Read More

Ontario has released its Pollinator Health Action Plan which includes focusing on four key stressors to honeybee and pollinator health and financial support and increased education for beekeepers. A re-iterated aspirational goal to “restore, enhance and protect” 1 million acres of pollinator habitat is also included in the plan. Found here, the plan is a mix of… Read More

Glen Murray is not the favourite son of Ontario’s farming industry. The Ontario Minister of Environment and Climate Change (MOECC) has made few friends in the Ontario farm sector with his push to restrict use of neonicotinoid seed treatments, dismiss sound science, and impose the will of his urban-dominated government on the province’s farmers. That’s the… Read More

Yesterday, Prime Minister Justin Trudeau blindsided not just provincial environment ministers but also premiers (and perhaps Canadians) by announcing a national carbon tax scheme that must be implemented by 2018. Saskatchewan premier Brad Wall released an emotionally-charged statement yesterday outlining how detrimental the carbon tax platform will be to Saskatchewan’s economy and the cost to individual… Read More

If agriculture wants to reduce the potential impact neonicotinoid seed treatments have on pollinators, it has to modify standard vacuum planters. That’s the verdict from Ridgetown College, University of Guelph researcher Dr. Art Schaafsma. “Essentially, what we’ve created is a drift problem,” says Schaafsma, who spoke publicly about his research for the first time last… Read More

Monsanto is still confident Canadian farmers will be able to plant Roundup Ready 2 Xtend soybeans this spring, but seed dealers and partners are working diligently on Plan B to ensure seed alternatives. The company continues to hold hope that it will receive European Union (EU) approval for the glyphosate and dicamba tolerant soybeans in… Read More

It’s been a good news week for Grain Farmers of Ontario chair Mark Brock. But he’s unsure how positive reports on the impacts neonicotinoid seed treatments have on pollinators will affect provincial grain farmers. Earlier this week, reports from Health Canada and the Pest Management Regulatory Agency (PMRA) delivered a one-two punch supporting the embattled… Read More

 

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