June 22, ’21: Logging interior old-growth. How Canada moves from petrostate to climate reality. Principles of Extinction Rebellion and the wording for a Stop Ecocide law



Wildsight in the East Kootenay is raising the alarm about old growth logging in the interior of BC. Wildsight’s Eddie Petryshen tells us about it.

Senior economist Marc Lee from CCPA BC outlines major steps to confront the climate emergency in Canada. It’s a clip from a webinar that The Corporate Mapping Project and the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives in BC ran in June on Canada’s on-going struggle with fossil fuels.

A few weeks ago some Extinction Rebellion activists gathered in Lakeside Park in Nelson for what is sometimes called “the talk”.  The rain was coming down hard on the roof, but we some clips that tell us more about the global Extinction Rebellion movement.

The global Stop EcoCide campaign announced a released wording for a new international law to protect the planet.  Linn Murray was online for the announcement and brings us some extracts.

The Environment News

Collated by Linn Murray

An expert panel of top international lawyers has released a definition for the crime of Ecocide, a first for global law. 

The Independent Expert Panel for the Legal Definition of Ecocide, chaired by barrister and author Philippe Sands (UK) together with UN jurist and former prosecutor Dior Fall Sow (Senegal), was convened in late 2020 at a powerfully symbolic moment, 75 years after the terms “genocide” and “crimes against humanity” were first used at Nuremberg.  

The panelists would like to see the proposed law amended as the 5th atrocity crime on the Rome Statute, the governing document of the International Criminal Court which prosecutes international crimes against humanity. The crime of “Ecocide” means unlawful or wanton acts committed with knowledge that there is a substantial likelihood of severe and either widespread or long-term damage to the environment being caused by those acts. 

Jojo Mehta, Chair of the Stop Ecocide Foundation said  “This is an historic moment.  This expert panel came together in direct response to a growing political appetite for real answers to the climate and ecological crisis. The moment is right – the world is waking up to the danger we are facing if we continue along our current trajectory.”

Press release submitted by the Stop Ecocide Foundation


Switzerland’s policy on fighting climate change has been thrown into doubt after voters rejected key measures in a popular vote.

A referendum saw voters narrowly reject the government’s plans for a car fuel levy and a tax on air tickets.

The measures were designed to help Switzerland meet targets under the Paris Agreement on climate change.

Many voters appear to have worried about the impact on the economy as the country tries to recover from Covid-19.

Opponents also pointed out that Switzerland is responsible for only 0.1% of global emissions, albeit with only 0.001% of the global population, and expressed doubts that such policies would help the environment.

The vote, under Switzerland’s system of direct democracy, went 51% against, 49% in favour.

The Swiss government has a progressive climate target, to cut emissions in half from 1990 levels by the year 2030.

Switzerland’s system of direct democracy means all major decisions in the Alpine nation are taken at the ballot box. Campaigners simply have to gather 100,000 signatures to ensure a nationwide vote.



The United States congress appears to be badly watering down US President Joe Biden’s bold proposal of $2 trillion to re-energize a greener, emissions reducing American economy.  A US Senate document summarizing the deals being struck as a Bipartisan Infrastructure Framework reveals far more about business-as-usual than any climate action. The senate plan calls for $974 billion in infrastructure spending on roads, bridges, railroads, and power infrastructure.

Meanwhile, the word “climate” does not appear in the bipartisan group’s blueprint.

A rift has grown in the Democratic Party ranks between progressives and more centrist democrats, where progressives say they will not support any deal that does not include major spending on the climate emergency. Thus far, 10 Democratic senators have publicly said they would not vote for an infrastructure bill that falls short on climate action; likely more than enough to sink the legislation.



Electric grid operators in California and Texas are struggling to keep power going to millions of people, as a crushing heatwave envelops the southwestern United States.

Temperatures are forecast to reach 42C in Sacremento this week, while California’s death valley rose to 54C, a few degrees shy of the hottest temperature ever recorded on Earth. Heat warnings stretch from southern California to northern Montana. In a historic event, more than 25 percent of the United States West is categorized as exceptional drought, the most severe category used by the US Drought Monitor.

Texas grid operators said they didn’t expect power shortfalls Tuesday night, but they’re asking residents to cut back on electricity use amid scorching temperatures, to avoid blackouts. California officials warned that power demand could outstrip supply later in the week.

It comes nearly one year after California’s rolling blackouts last summer and four months after Texas’s energy crisis in February, when a deep freeze paralyzed power plants, blacked out much of the state and left more than 150 people dead.





1 in 4 tailing pond sites failed safety requirements, says British Columbia’s mines auditor. Released last week, the auditor’s report showed 18 of 70 tailings storage facilities are not meeting new standards set for metal and coal mines across the province that are operating, closed or undergoing care and maintenance.  New standards were brought in after the 2014 Mount Polley tailings dam collapse, which sent 24 billion litres of mine waste into Quesnel Lake.

British Columbia’s efforts to ensure the safety of tailings storage facilities (TSFs) at the province’s dams have not lived up to government’s ‘world class’ ambitions, according to an internal audit conducted within the Ministry of Energy, Mines and Low Carbon Innovation made public Friday.

Many of BC’s tailings structures are immense. The Copper Mountain mine near Princeton, B.C., is currently seeking permission from the province to increase the height of its tailings dam to 255 metres, potentially taller than Vancouver’s tallest skyscrapers and over six times the height of the Mount Polley dam.


The War in the Woods is expanding further today, with a protest against raw log exports at the port in Nanaimo.  

On June 22nd, protesters led by Extinction Rebellion activists will be demanding the province Stop Raw Log Exports/ and Stop Logging Old Growth Ecosystems. 

In Vancouver, 3 people have been on hunger strike for 8 days after requesting an urgent meeting with B.C. Premier John Horgan and Forests Minister Katrine Conroy. The hunger strike is in solidarity with the protesters trying to stop logging at the Fairy Creek watershed near Port Renfrew.

And at the Fairy Creek blockades, 8 more people were arrested Sunday, including 2 minors, for defending old growth forest from logging and roadbuilding. So far, 254 protesters have been arrested for violating a court injunction to allow ongoing old growth logging in the Fairy Creek area.




Some Kootenay forests are at their driest levels ever recorded in June, as fire experts brace for a potentially hazardous drought and wildfire season.

A fire forecaster with the Southeast Fire Centre says four months of unusually dry weather have made the forests tinder-dry.

Jesse Ellis says that even this year’s “June-uary” cold-wet spell did little to relieve the rapidly drying forests, which have seen below average precipitation this spring. The month of May saw only 30% of its average yearly rainfall.

Week of June 22nd, 2021

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

Connecting to %s