Archives for posts with tag: Canada

From VBS TV:

Last winter we decided VBS had to do a story on the Oil Sands of Alberta. So far no American media outlet had comprehensively covered it and even the local press’s approach has left a lot to be desired. No one seemed to even know what it was. It’s strange that as we hit peak oil and the global oil reserves go on the decline, we have heard next to nothing about the fact that Canada, due to improved oil extraction technology and record oil prices, is poised to become a major player in the geopolitical market place. The big question going in is what does this sudden access to previously unobtainable oil mean? Is this our get out of jail free card for the present energy crisis or is it another pipe dream being hyped up by the very corporations and lobbyists who stand to gain the most from it? Traveling through the haze of Ft. McMurray did nothing but fortify our stance on fossil fuel. It’s dirty, expensive, and–most importantly–nonrenewable. Al Gore recently likened the oil sands to a drug pusher, satisfying our jones for quick and cheap energy. Say what you will about pushers (at least they’re not kicking out greenhouse gasses to the tune of 80 million kilograms a day), but we think he’s got us and our jones pretty much square on the head.

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From the Vancouver Sun:

The federal government is making good on a promise to ban a toxic chemical additive in soft plastic toys and other children’s products.

The new regulations, to be implemented in June, take aim at six phthalates, a family a chemicals known to cause reproductive harm and commonly used to make vinyl plastic soft and flexible. The additive will no longer be permitted to be used in a slew of items that are designed or are likely to be put in the mouths of children under four. These include bath toys, squeeze or inflatable toys, teethers, rattles and vinyl bibs.

Additionally, the use of three of the six phthalates, known as DEEP, DBP and BBP, will be restricted in all children’s toys and childcare items, even if designed for and used by older kids.

Health Minister Leona Aglukkaq, who is slated to make the official announcement Tuesday, is taking the step after Health Canada’s own market survey in 2008 found the widespread presence of phthalates in soft plastic toys and other items for young children to help with feeding, sleeping or relaxation and made out of polyvinyl chloride (PVC). Health Canada found the widespread presence of phthalates in these children’s items, despite a decade-long voluntary ban in North America.

More . . .

From Documentary Website:

Toxic Trespass, a compelling new film on children’s health and the environment, . . . investigates the growing evidence that we are conducting a large-scale toxicological experiment on our children, and explores what some scientists, doctors, activists and others are doing about it.

From The Globe and Mail:

Canada has become the first jurisdiction in the world to declare the everyday plastic-making compound bisphenol A to be toxic, an action that, while hailed by environmentalists, is shining a spotlight on the major use of the chemical in nearly all food and beverage cans sold in the country.

The federal government on Wednesday formally added BPA, as it is commonly known, to its toxic substances list based on concern about possible risk to fetuses and babies. The man-made chemical has been shown in scientific experiments to mimic the hormone estrogen, and is not naturally found in the environment.

The listing is the final regulatory step by the government after an exhaustive four-year study. Earlier, the review prompted Health Canada to ban the substance from polycarbonate plastic baby bottles and to ask infant food makers to get it out of baby formula packaging.

A Statistics Canada survey earlier this year found that 91 per cent of Canadians had the substance in their bodies.

Critics of the chemical want Canada to extend a BPA ban to all food and beverage cans, and not just those to which babies might be exposed, suggesting that the debate over the safety of the material is unlikely to subside. BPA is applied as an epoxy to can liners to help preserve food, but trace amounts leach from the containers and are ingested.

“The government needs to take the next step and protect the general Canadian population from this chemical,” contends Rick Smith, executive director of Environmental Defence, an advocacy group.

He said the finding that traces of the chemical are found in nearly all people in the country is “cause for significant concern.”

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